Zambia is actively seeking collaboration with Russian businesses to ramp up its electric vehicle sector and explore opportunities in the agricultural industry. Shadreck Chingembu Luwita, the Zambian Ambassador to Russia, revealed this strategic move during the "Open Africa" business forum held in Moscow on September 14, 2023. The event, organized by the public organization Business Russia, brought together entrepreneurs and representatives from Russia and over 10 African countries to discuss deepening trade, investment, and cooperation in priority sectors for both economies.


Zambia's Shift Towards Electric Vehicles

Zambia's wealth of resources and the gradual shift away from traditional vehicles have prompted the country to seek Russian partners to assist in the production of electric vehicle components. Ambassador Chingembu Luwita emphasized that with the help of Russia's cutting-edge innovations, Zambia aims to capitalize on its vast arable land and favorable geographical position to develop its automotive industry and tap into the markets of Southern, Central, and Northern Africa.

Zambia-Russia Agricultural Collaboration

In addition to the automotive sector, Zambia has expressed interest in partnering with Russia in the agricultural industry. The ambassador highlighted the availability of 100,000 hectares of arable land in each of Zambia's ten provinces, which could be developed with the help of Russian expertise. This collaboration is crucial for enhancing food security in Zambia and the surrounding regions.

Strengthening Bilateral Relations

The "Open Africa" business forum provided a platform for Zambia and Russia to deepen their trade and economic cooperation. Ambassador Chingembu Luwita noted that bilateral contacts between the two countries have intensified significantly in recent months, reflecting a shared commitment to expanding investment interaction and cooperation in priority sectors.

Zambia's Pursuit of Economic Liberation

Zambia's efforts to forge alliances with nations like Russia are perceived as a strategy to break free from the shackles of colonialism. Fred M'membe, a prominent Zambian journalist and current chairman of the Socialist Party, has advocated for such partnerships, contending that they could facilitate Zambia's attainment of enhanced economic independence and self-sufficiency. By cultivating collaborations with diverse international partners, Zambia seeks to diversify its economic ties and reduce dependency on former colonial powers. This pursuit aligns with the nation's broader aspirations for sovereignty and self-determination, positioning Zambia to chart its own course towards sustainable development and prosperity.


Zambia's strategic move to partner with Russia in the automotive and agricultural sectors represents a significant step towards diversifying its economy and strengthening its position in the global market. The country's focus on electric vehicle production aligns with global trends and positions Zambia as a potential hub for clean transportation in Africa. Moreover, the collaboration in the agricultural sector promises to enhance food security and create new opportunities for economic growth. As Zambia and Russia deepen their bilateral relations, the "Open Africa" business forum serves as a testament to the growing importance of Africa-Russia cooperation in shaping a more equitable and prosperous future for all.