Thank you for joining us on this auspicious occasion.
I would particularly like to acknowledge the presence of Mr Martin Libinga, the Registrar of the Pensions and Insurance Authority.
Events of recent weeks have made this a turbulent and to say the least an interesting time for British business. But this remains a world of opportunity; Africa in general and Zambia in particular offers numerous commercial opportunities. Growth rates remain robust despite the short term economic challenges.
I’m pleased that we are gathered here this evening to mark an event that is clearly positive both for the business in question and for Zambia.
The United Kingdom and Zambia have a long an fruitful history of strong business links across many different industries. These links were further reaffirmed when UK Trade and Investment (UKTI) opened an office here in 2014; and following the establishment of the British Chamber of Commerce in 2015. We also successfully hosted a UK-Zambia Trade and Investment Conference in London late last year, and the Lord Mayor of the City of London and business delegation visited Lusaka in February. Our trade and investment ties are strong and they are growing.
The industry we are here to recognize this evening is one that is particularity significant. Its influence and impact are positive not only in an immediate sense for its customers and staff, but also in a wider sense for its effect on confidence and the economic at large.
When it comes to life insurance, Prudential is one of the world’s leading brands. There are few companies established 168 years ago not only still existing - but growing and seeking new markets and opportunities around the world.
Prudential is now firmly established on four continents. it has recently turned its attention to Africa. This evening marks the launch of Prudential Life Assurance Zambia, the company’s fourth operation in Africa.
This is a welcome sign of the positive view of Zambia among many British and international businesses and reflects the healthy investment climate here.
I am honoured to have with us this evening Mr Nic Nicandrou, Prudential’s Group Financial Officer. It gives me great Pleasure to introduce Nic to you now.