By BENNIE MUNDANDO
ZAMBIAN transporters have protested the coming of a foreign transportation company backed by some Americans whose huge ﬂeet of trucks are without contracts and can lead to underpricing and unfair competition for the locals.
Copperbelt Open Truckers Association of Zambia (COTA) president Stanley Muluka yesterday told the Daily Nation in an interview that the association had objected to allowing Alistair Logistics, a heavily Overseas Private Investment Corporation (OPIC) – funded operator, to come to Zambia as that would paralyze local businesses. Mr Muluka said during a Road Transport Safety Agency (RTSA) public sitting held in Solwezi on December 10, 2018, the association objected an application to grant Alistair Logistics a Licence to operate in Zambia because with the submissions given under oath, the company applied for 28 vehicles after declaring to have brought in 240 trucks.
He said the panel asked the company to submit all documents for the declared number of trucks as it never made any logical sense to do variation at a later stage with such a big fleet but that later, the company opted to go to Lusaka RTSA sitting where it now applied for 74 trucks and 77 trailers coming to a combination of 151 units from 28.
He charged that Alistair’s project was assessed under Tanzanian regulations and not Zambian and that the association felt that there was need for OPIC to re-conduct an assessment on how the project will impact the transport sector in Zambia.
“We also call for our Government institutions like ZRA to investigate issues to do with withholding Tax on OPIC loan, ZDA investment licence which is easily accessed without assessing the economic impact on other local players in that sector, CCPC unfair competition and ZEMA compliance,” he said.