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The global economic crisis is having a serious impact on Zambia. In international trade, Zambia is a one-product economy. Copper accounts for some 70% of its exports, and prices have collapsed. If they stay at their current level, exports will halve in 2009. The most immediate social impact has been the loss of some 5,000 out of a total of some 30,000 mining jobs. Based the author’s interviews with a number of international donors, government officials, economists, and civil society organizations in Lusaka this paper documents impacts on Zambia’s trade and financial sectors as a result of the global economic crisis. It reflects on the how the Zambian government has limited options to deal with the crisis and considers what the implications of this are to other institutions, both Zambian and international.

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