In a press statement released yesterday, the Zambia National Market Credit Association (ZANAMACA) commended President Hakainde Hichilema and his government for achieving a significant milestone in the country’s economic history through the debt restructuring deal. The association called on all Zambian citizens to actively participate in the nation’s economic activities and support the government’s vision of job and wealth creation.
Under the debt restructuring plan, the country will have over 20 years to repay the debt. ZANAMACA emphasized the importance of unity among citizens and urged them to rally behind the government’s efforts to deliver Zambia from economic stress. The association believes that the debt restructuring deal will restore economic growth and allocate additional financial resources to critical sectors such as health, education, and market infrastructure development.
ZANAMACA highlighted the significance of citizen participation in national development, emphasizing that economic growth depends on how citizens identify and address challenges at the household, community, and institutional levels. The association encouraged the government to proactively engage with citizens, seek their input, and transform homegrown solutions into new revenue sources to supplement the debt restructuring deal.
In line with this, ZANAMACA appealed to President Hakainde Hichilema and the Ministry of Finance and National Planning to include the Informal Economy Data Capture in the 2024-2026 Medium National Budget. This measure aims to boost domestic revenue collection and support the debt restructuring deal. The association suggested extending social security coverage to the informal sector, enabling the capture of sensitive data for compliance purposes. This would involve onboarding the 6 million-plus informal economy participants, including marketers, small-scale farmers, taxi and bus drivers, onto entities such as NAPSA, Workers Compensation Fund Control Board, NHIMA, and ZRA for tax purposes.
The inclusion of Informal Economy Data Capture in the National Budget would enable accurate levy collections by local authorities, create over 3,000 data capture jobs for the youth, and enhance domestic revenue. This, in turn, could lead to reduced taxes on the formal sector and decrease the need for external borrowing by the government.
ZANAMACA concluded its statement by pledging its support to the government and expressing its commitment to collaborate with relevant ministries to develop effective long-term mechanisms for timely and hassle-free domestic revenue collection.
By condensing the original press release, the news story focuses on the key points and highlights the appeal made by ZANAMACA to include the Informal Economy Data Capture in the national budget to support the debt restructuring deal and enhance domestic revenue.