Zambian timber merchants fear domination

Lusaka- Zambia (PANA) -- Zambian timber merchants have expressed fears about fellow countries of the Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (COMESA) like Egypt and South Africa dominating the sector, under African Union.
Businessmen in the timber and wood processing sector also voiced fears that an African Union might benefit only the developed markets of countries like Egypt, South Africa and Mauritius.
However, press reports quoted Zambia's Commerce, Trade and Industry permanent secretary Moses Banda as saying the complaints were wrongly addressed to COMESA, arguing that problems of unfair competition would best be dealt with by the Zambian government.
Zambian farmers are also moaning about the unfair trade practices between them and nearby countries like Zimbabwe that have rigidly stuck to protectionist policies.
Apart from complaining to government the Zambian farmers had also lodged an official complaint with the COMESA secretariat in Lusaka, on Zimbabwe's alleged disregard of Free Trade Area regulations that allow Zambian farmers to export to that country.

02 august 2001 15:20:00

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