Zambia. During a visit to China in February, President
Rupiah Banda signed an agreement with his counterpart Hu
Jintao on far-reaching cooperation on geological studies and
mineral extraction in Zambia. There was no mention of how
much the deal was worth, but China has already invested
multibillion in the country, mainly in the mining industry.
At the same time, agreements were concluded on Chinese
investments in road construction, construction of an
industrial zone and economic, technical and cultural
COUNTRYAAH, the opposition in Zambia is less enthusiastic about the
large Chinese presence and accuses the Chinese companies of
ruthless exploitation of Zambian workers. The opposition got
water on its mill when Chinese bosses opened fire at a coal
mine against workers who protested against poor working
conditions. Twelve people were shot.
Mineral exports account for a large part of the country's
income. During the year, 720,000 tonnes of copper were
exported, which is said to be the highest figure in 37
The world's confidence in the current authorities'
sincerity in the fight against corruption is weak. The
Global Fund for the Fight against AIDS, Tuberculosis and
Malaria - whose money comes mainly from the US, EU and Japan
- contained planned aid to Zambia's health sector due to
concerns over corruption. The EU froze money allocated for
road construction in Zambia. Sweden stopped some of its
support in 2009, but received SEK 6.7 million during the
year, corresponding to the sum that had been embezzled.
In particular, the United States has fiercely criticized
Zambia after a court rejected a British demand that former
President Frederick Chiluba pay back the equivalent of $ 46
million to the Zambian state. A British court found him
guilty in 2007 of gross misappropriation of state funds. But
the Zambia High Court closed the case on the grounds that a
British judgment has no validity under Zambian law. When the
government refrained from appealing the court decision,
spokesmen for the United States commented that Zambia missed
a golden opportunity to prove good governance.
The 2009 sentence of 3.5 years in prison for Chiluba's
wife Regina was revoked by a higher court. The High Court
considered that it could not be proven that she purchased
private property for state money.