Zambia: History

  1. 12th Century

    The Shona people arrive in the area establishing the empire of Mwene Mutapa.

  2. 16th Century

    The Luba and Lunda empires of Zaire set up small kingdoms.

  3. 1889

    Britain establishes control over Northern Rhodesia, leaving power in the hands of local rulers.

  4. 1920s

    Copper is discovered, encouraging an influx of European technicians and administrators.

  5. 1953

    The Federation of Rhodesia and Nyasaland comprising Northern Rhodesia, Southern Rhodesia (now Zimbabwe), and Nyasaland (now Malawi) is created.

  6. 1964

    The federation is dissolved and Northern Rhodesia becomes the Republic of Zambia.

  7. 1975

    The Tam-Zam Railway is opened providing a link between the Copperbelt to the Tanzanian port of Dar es Salaam, reducing Zambian dependence on Rhodesia and South Africa for its exports.

  8. 2005

    The World Bank approves a $3.8 billion debt relief package, which will write off more than 50% of the country’s debt.

  9. 2006

    Oil is discovered in the west region of the country.

  10. 2010

    Zambia and China sign a mining cooperation agreement and deal to set up a joint economic zone. China also agrees to build a hydroelectric power plant on the Kafue River.


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