More trouble for Zambia. Copper prices have fallen 14.4 per cent this year, including 10 per cent in the past month.
On 23 July 2013 I wrote 'Zambia and falling copper prices' where I flagged up more risks and warned that we need to be fiscally prudent and have sufficient fiscal space to handle the coming storm.
On 14 October 2013 I wrote 'Budget 2014: Summary of Readers Comments' where I summarised your views that Zambia's 2014 budget is broken because it does not take into account the serious possibility of falling copper prices in 2014.
On 5 February 2014 I wrote 'Zambia Copper Risks where I argued that it is now too late. Copper is facing the longest slump for two decades. I warned that the Kwacha will suffer terribly.
On 27 February 2014 I wrote 'Deficit woes, free falling Kwacha and more borrowing!' This highlighted that the fundamentals are weakening. And a key fundamental is China's slowdown and its impact on copper prices.
On 10 March 2014, I repeated the warnings on my 5 February 2014 article with 'Zambia Copper Risks, 2nd Edition'
These articles can be found on the Zambian Economist website (4,000 unique visits per day) and our Facebook page (34k readers). Given the wide readership I am satisfied that I have done my bit to warn and generate interest in this issue.
I am also quite satisfied that Finance Minister Alexander Chikwanda and others who lead the country have had all the warnings. I certainly sounded the alarm and I know many others did. Zambia is in a difficult position in this area today because Chikwanda has chosen to let it be a mess. It is nothing to do with ignorance. It is appears more of a case of wilful negligence on his part.