Competition Policies and Consumer Welfare Corporate Strategies and Consumer Prices in Developing Countries
Edited by Lahcen Achy and Susan Joekes
Chapter 5: Production and distribution in the beef, poultry and milk sectors in Zambia
This chapter describes how market conditions have changed for the production and distribution of important protein foods in Zambia in recent years and considers the competition implications. The study covers a turbulent period of the country’s political and economic history. At independence in 1964, many sectors of the Zambian economy, including large-scale commercial cattle farming and retail distribution, were dominated by a few multinational companies. From 1968, the government implemented a series of nationalization programmes in various economic sectors anchored on socialist economic principles of economic management. In the food distribution system, the government created a system of state-owned national retail chains stores under the umbrella of the Zambia Consumer Buying Corporation (ZCBC) and the National Import and Export Corporation (NIEC). Scattered, small-sized privately owned retail and wholesale outlets were present in the major towns but they did not offer significant competition to the retail chains. Informal retail operators such as market traders, hawkers and street vendors supplied the lower end of the market. The state of the national retail system left much to be desired in terms of both reliable supply linkages and satisfying demand.
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