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Unlocking the Potential of Zambian Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises "Learning from the international best practices - the Southeast Asian Experience"


  • Chisala, Chibwe


This paper examines the SMEs performance in Zambia and attempts to identify some practical lessons that Zambia can learn from Southeast Asian countries (with reference to Malaysia) in order to facilitate industrial development through unlocking the potential of its SMEs sector. Malaysia and Zambia were at the same level of economic development as evidenced by similar per capita incomes but Zambia has remained behind economically and its manufacturing sector has stagnated as if both countries did not have similar initial endowments. It therefore, becomes imperative that Zambia learns from such countries on how they managed to take-off economically with a focus on SME development. Training (education), research & development, market availability and technological advancement through establishment of industrial linkages coupled with cluster formation were some of the outstanding strategies identified that Zambia could use as a “key” to unlock its SMEs’ potential as it strives to meet the UN MDGs in particular halving its poverty levels by 2015 and also realizing its vision of becoming a middle income earner by 2030.

Suggested Citation

  • Chisala, Chibwe, 2008. "Unlocking the Potential of Zambian Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises "Learning from the international best practices - the Southeast Asian Experience"," IDE Discussion Papers 134, Institute of Developing Economies, Japan External Trade Organization(JETRO).
  • Handle: RePEc:jet:dpaper:dpaper134

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Cerra, Valerie & Saxena, Sweta Chaman, 2003. "How responsive is Chinese export supply to market signals?," China Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 14(3), pages 350-370.
    2. Yin-Wong Cheung & Menzie D. Chinn & Eiji Fujii, 2010. "China's Current Account and Exchange Rate," NBER Chapters,in: China's Growing Role in World Trade, pages 231-271 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    3. Alan G. Ahearne & John G. Fernald & Prakash Loungani & John W. Schindler, 2003. "China and emerging Asia: comrades or competitors?," Working Paper Series WP-03-27, Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago.
    4. Ito, Takatoshi & Ogawa, Eiji & Sasaki, Yuri Nagataki, 1998. "How Did the Dollar Peg Fail in Asia?," Journal of the Japanese and International Economies, Elsevier, vol. 12(4), pages 256-304, December.
    5. John G. Fernald & Prakash Loungani, 2004. "Comrades or competitors? on trade relationships between China and emerging Asia," Chicago Fed Letter, Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago, issue Mar.
    6. Jahangir Aziz & Xiangming Li, 2007. "China’s Changing Trade Elasticities," IMF Working Papers 07/266, International Monetary Fund.
    7. Jaime Marquez & John Schindler, 2007. "Exchange-rate Effects on China's Trade," Review of International Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 15(5), pages 837-853, November.
    8. Barry Eichengreen & Yeongseop Rhee & Hui Tong, 2007. "China and the Exports of Other Asian Countries," Review of World Economics (Weltwirtschaftliches Archiv), Springer;Institut für Weltwirtschaft (Kiel Institute for the World Economy), vol. 143(2), pages 201-226, July.
    9. Alan G. Ahearne & John G. Fernald & Prakash Loungani & John W. Schindler, 2006. "Flying geese or sitting ducks: China’s impact on the trading fortunes of other Asian economies," International Finance Discussion Papers 887, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
    10. Shouyang Wang & Zhenquan Wang & Jing Zhang, 2003. "Stress testing analysis of the effects of Japanese yen's depreciation on Chinese exports," Applied Economics Letters, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 10(3), pages 185-190.
    11. Anita Doraisami, 2004. "Trade Causes of the Asian Crisis: The Malaysian Experience," The World Economy, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 27(5), pages 715-725, May.
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    More about this item


    Development; SMEs (Small and Medium Enterprises); MNCs (Multi-National Corporations); Zambia; Malaysia; Southeast Asia; Small and medium-scale enterprises; International business enterprises; 発展; 中小企業; 多国籍企業; ザンビア; マレーシア; 東南アジア;

    JEL classification:

    • L60 - Industrial Organization - - Industry Studies: Manufacturing - - - General
    • O19 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - International Linkages to Development; Role of International Organizations
    • R20 - Urban, Rural, Regional, Real Estate, and Transportation Economics - - Household Analysis - - - General

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