Crisis brings most of Luanda-Bengo Special Economic Zone factories, in Angola, to a standstill

3 May 2018

At least 66 of the 76 factories set up in the Luanda-Bengo Special Economic Zone (ZEELB), in Angola, are at a standstill as a result of the crisis caused by the drop in oil prices since 2014, said the president of the Democratic Trade Union of Industry, Retail and Services.

Carlos Neto, speaking on the sidelines of a meeting of trade union commissions of the industrial units of the ZEELB, proposed the privatisation of halted companies to allow entrepreneurs with financial capacity to give them new life.

The government came close to privatising 53 industrial units installed in the ZEELB to save on maintenance costs and optimise job creation under a presidential order of 26 May 2016 authorising the “transfer of all shares representing the capital”of these industrial units to, “private business entities that have sufficient capital and technology.”

In February of this year President João Lourenço ordered a commission to be set up to prepare and carry out the process of privatisation of benchmark public companies, through the Angolan stock exchange.

The commission is coordinated by the Minister of State for Economic and Social Development, Manuel Nunes, and includes the ministers of Finance, Economy and Planning, the Secretaries for Economic Affairs, Finance and the Treasury of the President of the Republic.

Meanwhile, the management and operation of the industrial development hubs of Dande (Bengo) and Lucala and Massangano (Kwanza Norte province) will be delivered to private companies in 2018, according to an order signed by the Angolan President.

The same document, which covers “other existing hubs or that are under construction in other provinces,” establishes a multi-sector commission led by the Ministry of Industry and which includes, among other members, the Ministers of Economy and Planning, Finance and Trade.

The multi-sector commission must “list and inventory all the industrial hubs in the country” and “whose management and operation is convenient for the State to assign to private entities,” as well as to establish the procedures and the schedule to carry out public tenders to transfer management and exploration. (macauhub)