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Zimbabwe campaign for foreign direct investment intensifies

by Staff reporter
07 Apr 2024 at 10:05hrs | Views
IN a strategic move meant to bolster the country's economic landscape, the Minister of Finance, Economic Development and Investment Promotion, Professor Mthuli Ncube, is set to spearhead a series of Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) roadshows in South Africa over the next few weeks.

The primary objective of the roadshows is to attract crucial foreign direct investment into key sectors of the Zimbabwean economy.

Following those engagements, the minister will participate in a high-profile investor summit scheduled to take place in Johannesburg at the beginning of May, showcasing Zimbabwe's investment potential on a larger stage.

Subsequently, Prof Ncube is expected to lead engagements in London and New York, where he will collaborate with other African financial leaders in a global endeavour aimed at revitalising capital markets across the continent and beyond.

The series of meetings by the Finance Minister are aimed at underscoring the Government's commitment to fostering economic growth, attracting international investments, and positioning Zimbabwe as an attractive destination for global investors.

In an interview with Sunday News in Bulawayo recently, Prof Ncube said the engagements were meant to drum up investments for the country.

"You will know that I was recently in China where we were drumming up investors from Asia because they are not well exposed to our markets. In a few weeks, we will be in Cape Town and Johannesburg doing road shows.

"We will come back to Johannesburg beginning of May for a bigger investor summit. Then on capital markets, we will go to London and New York. So this is a global campaign of turning around capital markets. We are also marketing our offshore international investment centre which will bring certain benefits to investors," said Prof Ncube.

Turning to the global financial institutions' ratings, Prof Ncube said Zimbabwe needed to have a credit rating first, which will help subject the speed of clearance of the debt arrears as it does not make sense to try to go for a rating with those arrears.

"Due to arrears, we will just have a low rating so it will not help us at all, it will only hurt us. As soon as we clear our arrears we will acquire a rating that will enable us to get Europe on the market.

"On that note, we have been able to raise money in other ways and there has not been a lot of pressure for the Government to raise money through the issuance of a bond or public markets because we have always been able to raise money," said the minister.

Prof Ncube said Treasury was watching the country's debt in ratios so that the country does not get overly indebted.

"The good thing is that the economy is growing and we will rebase the economy and that is what ZimStat is working on. In terms of the level of debt, we are in a very good position and we are better than most African countries," said Prof Ncube.

The minister further revealed that they will have an IMF mission that will begin the scoping for a staff-monitored programme which should be concluded by June.

"The good thing about the programme is that it comes from us as the Government of Zimbabwe. All we are doing is that we asked someone to monitor us while we implement what we want. Gone are the days when IMF could impose certain things, now they cannot impose they can only recommend or disagree with what we are doing. As Zimbabweans, we have never been shy in terms of implementing tough reforms.

"What needs to be done will be done by ourselves on our own without imposition. The other issue is the arrears clearance issue but that is a marathon issue that will take time and not a Significant Market Power (SMP) issue but the SMP will assist the arrears clearance issue. We are making progress and we have made some adjustments as there is more that is required," said Prof Ncube.

Source - The Sunday News