Hon. Minister Margaret Mwanakatwe
It is my privilege and honour to welcome you to Livingstone, Zambia our tourist capital, and in particular to the 2017 Ease of Doing Business Initiative (EDBI) Conference. I hope you will feel at home.
This Conference is a great opportunity for us to share experiences on ways to make it easier to do business in our countries for the private sector and our citizens at large. The primary objective of this meeting is to learn, share and understand what best supports business growth.
The EDBI Conference is premised on the need to showcase and facilitate replication of best practices, best reforms, ideas and expertise on the legal regulatory and institutional frameworks behind successful business environment reforms in order to pave way for increased investment flows into Africa. As we all know, the private sector is the backbone of every economy. Our businesses contribute to economic development through investments, creation of jobs and revenue generation among other things. Therefore, it is important for governments to create enabling environments in which businesses thrive contribute to economic growth. As such, platforms like the Ease of Doing Business Initiative Conference are important in facilitating dialogue about Business Reforms among the public sector and between the public and private sector.
The Government of the Republic of Zambia remains committed to industrialisation and value addition through private sector investment. We are keen to learn from you and to share our own experience in implementing Business Reforms. Further, we are hopeful that as we discuss Business Reforms at this year’s EDBI Conference, each participant will acquire some knowledge or add some and leave with increased zeal to champion further Business Reforms.
May you have an unforgettable experience in Livingstone. Once again, welcome to Zambia!
Hon. Margaret D. Mwanakatwe, MP
MINISTER OF COMMERCE, TRADE AND INDUSTRY
The Ease of Doing Business Initiative (EDBI) The EDBI Conference is a peer-to-peer learning event requested by African countries and supported by the World Bank Group, to facilitate knowledge sharing on Doing Business reforms.
The 2017 EDBI Conference will be hosted by the Government of Zambia and is scheduled to take place between May 15th and May 19th 2017 at the Avani Victoria Falls Resort in Livingstone, Zambia.
The theme for the 2017 Conference is Business Reforms for Industrialization, Value Addition and Job Creation.
EDBI is grounded in the interest and need expressed by several Africa countries to learn and share information and experiences about the reforms implemented in the scope of Doing Business. In August 2010, the World Bank Group, in collaboration with the Regional Multidisciplinary Centre of Excellence (RMCE) and some Governments, designed the EDBI, which has been gradually refined over the years. Mauritius, the top-ranked DB country in the Africa region for three years running, offered to host the event and to share its experience.
Following the successful pilot of this peer-to-peer learning model held in Mauritius in 2010, Rwanda, the country which improved the most in the ease of doing business in 2009/2010, hosted a second peer-to-peer workshop for Governments in Eastern and Southern Africa in March 2011. The third meeting was held in March 2012 in Gaborone, Botswana. Since 2012, the conference has been hosted by South Africa, Mozambique, Uganda and Kenya.
Zambia will be the 8th country to host the EDBI Conference, which focuses on the following key objectives:
- Facilitate sharing of knowledge and experience on investment climate reforms in Africa; and
- Improve the investment climate and increase the region’s share of investment flows and export markets, in line with the stated regional economic integration objectives of the involved Regional Economic Communities and Member States.
- Facilitate the showcasing of best practice under one roof, encourage political buy-in and follow-through of committed reform agenda covering various sectors