On 31st March 2023, U.S. Vice President Kamala Harris met with Zambia’s President Hakainde Hichilema in Lusaka to affirm the U.S. commitment to support Zambia’s socio-economic development.
Vice President Harris announced that the United States and Zambia will sign a Commercial Development Memorandum of Understanding as a follow-up to their commitment to boost commercial engagement during their bilateral meeting in Washington DC in September 2021.
The Vice President also affirmed the United States’ commitment to Zambia’s economic revitalization and welcomed President Hichilema’s economic reform agenda.
She assured President Hichilema that the United States considers the finalization of Zambia’s debt treatment a top priority and that U.S. officials are calling on all bilateral official creditors to provide a meaningful debt reduction for Zambia.
The two leaders also discussed cooperation at the United Nations and through the Southern African Development Community (SADC), including on insecurity in the region.
As part of her visit, the Vice President announced the following U.S. plans, working with Congress as appropriate.
Strengthening Commercial Engagement
On April 3, Zambia’s Ministry of Commerce, Trade and Industry and the U.S. Department of Commerce intend to sign a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) to develop and implement commercial projects of strategic priority.
Investing in Democratic Institutions and Good Governance
The U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) plans to provide USD 10 million to support the Government of the Republic of Zambia and non-government stakeholder efforts to promote democratic and accountable local governance.
USAID also plans to provide USD 3.5 million to support Zambian civil society to implement reforms and oversight activities that will deepen Zambia’s democratic processes and support women’s political participation.
USAID also plans to contribute USD 3 million in a new four-year Strengthening Good Financial Governance project with the Government of the Republic of Zambia to strengthen its financial management systems.
Bolstering Health Cooperation
Over the next two years, the United States plans to deploy more than USD 372.1 million in appropriated funding and has requested an additional $387.9 million in the President’s FY2024 Budget to be provided during this timeframe to support the Zambian healthcare system by providing equitable access to high-quality, client-centred, integrated health services.
The U.S. President’s Malaria Initiative (PMI) plans to invest USD 28 million over the next year in partnership with the Government of Zambia to deploy lifesaving interventions proven to fight malaria, including bed nets, fast-acting malaria medicines, rapid diagnostic tests, and preventative treatments in pregnancy.
Through the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and USAID, the U.S. Government intends to provide approximately USD 17 million over the next three years (Fiscal Years 2022-2024 funds), pending the availability of appropriations and final allocations, to support efforts to enhance global health security and pandemic preparedness. This effort will support Zambia to implement effective risk communication for public awareness of pandemic threats and prevent, detect, and respond to zoonotic disease pathogens.
Promoting Innovative Food Security, Energy, and Climate Solutions
USAID and Prosper Africa’s flagship Africa Trade and Investment (ATI) project plan to provide USD 1.5 million to launch a new Fertilizer Fund in Zambia to address the impacts of Russia’s war in Ukraine and the global food security crisis by helping farmers access alternatives to Russian-sourced fertilizer.
The U.S. Trade and Development Agency (USTDA) will support the expansion and reliability of Zambia’s renewable energy infrastructure through more than USD 1 million in grant funding for a feasibility study that will help develop a utility-scale battery energy storage system.