The Inestimable Wealth of Zambia

The mere mention of Zambia is bound to pop the image of the spectacular Victoria Falls into your mind.


Victoria falls
Victoria falls

By Diego Delso, CC BY-SA 4.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=73750660


Zambia has an abundance of natural resources. It is the land of the mythical African walking safari, boasts breathtaking water bodies – such as Lake Kariba, and the wild Zambezi River – and has ample wildlife.

Did you know Zambia is the second-largest producer of copper in Africa?

As we celebrate Black History Month, let us explore the natural wealth of Zambia.

Tourism

In 2019, Zambia made $849 million from tourists, contributing $1.7 billion to the gross domestic product (GDP) and 7.2% of employment.

It is not surprising that Zambia generates such a huge chunk of revenue from tourism.

Located in the warm heart of Africa, Zambia is distinguished by its miombo woodlands, landlocked on a plateau with great valleys, hills, and mountains.

Zambia, one of the safest countries in the world, provides a blend of Africa-friendliness and numerous wild places worthy of exploring to tourists. Some even say Zambia is the best-kept secret in Africa.

With eighteen magnificent waterfalls, including the spectacular Victoria Falls. Other notable mentions include Lake Kariba, the largest man-made lake in Africa, and Lake Tanganyika – the deepest natural lake worldwide.

Approximately 30% of the Zambian land is reserved purely for wildlife, with 20 national parks and 34 game management areas.


Elephants: Zambia is home to the big five
Elephants: Zambia is home to the big five

Zambia is home to several rare and endangered animals and plants. The black rhinos, wild dogs, and the shoebill stork are some of the rarest and most endangered animals in the world. These animals are highly protected in Zambia. At least 3,543 wildflowers, 242 mammal species, and over 757 bird species have been found in Zambia.

Zambia is also the most water-rich country in Africa and the source of endless fascination and adventure.

Mining

Zambia has been enjoying continuous economic blossoming since the 1980s, especially in its principal industries: mining, construction, and manufacturing.


Zambian cobalt
Zambian cobalt

Source: DW


In fact, in 2010, the World Bank named Zambia as one of the world’s fastest economically reformed countries. And by 2015, Zambia has worked her way up to the seventh-best country for business in Africa.

What’s more, Zambia is the second-largest producer of copper in Africa and one of the largest mining economies in Southern Africa. Over 20% of the world’s emeralds are from Zambia.

Additionally, Zambia is not just one of the world’s highest-grade deposits of copper. The country is also the seventh-largest copper producer in the world. Zambia has significant potential for other natural resources such as manganese, coal, emeralds, and gold.

The Cannabis Buzz

Workers at a Cannabis farm in Zambia
Workers at a Cannabis farm in Zambia

Source: The African Exponent


Did you know that cannabis farming is legal in Zambia?

The Zambian government has legalized cannabis for export and medicinal uses only.

From hair care to skincare to medicinal products, cannabis has incredible therapeutic and rejuvenation properties. Little wonder this star plant is sparking up in the beauty and medical space.

Although farmers have been growing cannabis for years in Africa, the consumption of the plant either for medical or recreational purposes is criminalized on the continent. However, the recent global demand for cannabis in the medical and beauty corridors has caused the Zambian government to rethink its cannabis laws. Zambia is one of the very few African countries you can farm cannabis without the fear of being thrown in jail.

So, the next time you get a prescription filled for any cannabis derivative, it could very well be from Zambia.


A Zambian cotton farmer
A Zambian cotton farmer

Source: Shutterstock


Other major agricultural export products include sugar, tobacco, and cotton.

With so much economic potential, the Zambian government is actively implementing strategies to diversify its economy. Lusaka, the capital city, has more to offer in culture and social life.

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