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The Zambia Qualifications Authority Act No. 13 of 2011 was enacted by the Government of the Republic of Zambia to “provide for the development and implementation of a national qualifications framework; establish the Zambia Qualifications Authority; provide measures to ensure that standards and registered qualifications are internationally comparable; and provide for matters connected with, or incidental to the foregoing”.

The Authority shall, with the approval of the Minister, develop and implement a National Qualifications Framework for the classification, accreditation, publication and articulation of quality assured national qualifications.

In order to achieve the objectives of the Framework, The Authority shall:

  1. Develop and implement policy and criteria for the development, accreditation and publication of qualifications and    part qualifications, after consultation with the appropriate authority;
  2. Accredit a qualification or part-qualification recommended by an appropriate authority if it meets the relevant criteria;
  3. Publish an annual list of the prescribed standards and qualifications of the sub-frameworks.


The Zambia Qualifications Authority (ZAQA) has the mandate to develop, manage, and operate the Zambia Qualifications Framework (ZQF). It is pertinent to emphasise that the ZAQA is not a Quality Assurance Body, but will coordinate outputs of relevant Awarding and Quality Assurance Bodies who are responsible for the various parts of the education and skills training system of Zambia. Qualifications are generated from a number of sources. Among these are the following:

  • Government Ministries seeking knowledge and skills necessary for the attainment of sectorial development objectives;
  • Education and Training Institutions, recognizing, and reacting to existing knowledge and skills gaps or projected education and skills requirements;
  • Industry seeking knowledge and skills for improved productivity and product development;
  • Professional Associations, recognizing new developments in content of knowledge, skills and competencies in particular disciplines.