Zimbabwe has been included to kick start the second phase of the multi-million Kazungula Bridge project.
This inclusion was a decision that was made following a recent meeting between the Presidents of Zambia, Botswana and Zimbabwe.
Having agreed to collectively work together, the decision was revealed during a joint press briefing by Zambian Housing and Infrastructure Development Minister Ronald Chitotela, Botswana Transport and Communication Minister Kitso Mokaila and Zimbabwean Transport and Infrastructure Development Minister Joram Gumbo.
Following their agreement the three countries will set up a one-stop border post at Kazungula in Zambia’s Southern province where all checks will be carried out.
The African Development Bank (AfDB) have dedicated it support to the project by taking up part of the project funding.
Going forward, the three involved presidents took their time to inspect the progress of the project over the weekend at Kasane where the Kazungula Bridge is being constructed.
The prospect of the project at completion is to boost intra-regional trade within the SADC region and beyond.
The Zambian and Botswana government also expect the project to enhance trade and commerce thereby developing their economies as well as their global competitiveness.
About the Project
The Kazungula bridge construction is a bespoke project of the Zambian and Botswana government which started in 2014. Completion of the phase one took place at the later part of 2018.
The project is a part of an infrastructure development programme developed to boost regional integration in the SADC region and the project is at the North-South Corridor of the region.
This corridor is the busiest of all regional corridors in the SADC region, linking landlocked countries to the port of Durban, the regional hub for export and import. It is set to increase businesses tied to the mining, agriculture and service sectors which is a huge advantage to the African economy.
The project funding has been sponsored by the AFDB, Zambia and Botswana government. Costing $229, 62 million it is co-financed by the Japanese Development Agency (JICA), in the form of loans to both Zambia and Botswana.
The project includes a bridge linking Botswana and Zambia over the Zambezi River to replace the existing ferry, and a one-stop border facility at Kazungula.
The handover of the project to the two governments is expected in March 2019.