News Column

Govt Seeks U.S.$27 Billionb for Zim-Asset

June 27, 2014

Walter Nyamukondiwa



Government has engaged banks and multilateral lending institutions -- including the World Bank, China's Eximbank and the African Development Bank -- to secure a portion of the US$27 billion needed to fully operationalise Zim-Asset, the country's five-year economic blueprint to 2018.

The bigger chunk of the money is expected to come from internal sources through the establishment of a Sovereign Wealth Fund, among other sources.

Addressing heads of Government departments at a retreat here yesterday, Chief Secretary to the President and Cabinet Dr Misheck Sibanda said the success of Zim-Asset hinged on mobilisation of adequate financial resources.

"Apart from providing own funding from our constrained fiscus, concerted efforts are being made to secure such support from development partners and international financial institutions," he said.

"These include the following: the Infrastructural Development Bank of South Africa (IDBSA); the African Development Bank (AfDB), African Capacity Building Foundation (ACBF), the European Union (EU), the China Eximbank and the World Bank."

The Bill for the establishment of the Sovereign Wealth Fund, which is viewed as one of the key resource mobilisation strategies, is already under consideration.

Government is targeting to secure at least US$5 billion in the short-term, with subsequent tranches of the same amount over time to jump-start the economic blueprint.

Dr Sibanda said there was great anticipation of increased inflows of donor support to the Vote of Credit, adding that Government established a reconfigured Cabinet Aid Co-ordination Committee, which would ensure donor resources are channelled through the formal Government system for accountability, efficiency and transparency.

He said while Zim-Asset comes at a time when the country was facing challenges, including the liquidity squeeze and depressed economic performance, there were some things that were within the nation's capacity to address.

"Granted that some of our challenges are exogenous and hence imposed from outside, it is also true that a greater part of these are within our capacity to manage," he said.

"For instance, we can and indeed should streamline our procurement processes and investment procedures to ensure that the State Procurement Board processes tender projects expeditiously and that the Zimbabwe Investment Authority becomes a real one-stop investment shop."

Dr Sibanda called on all cluster leaders to come up with clear-cut cluster specific priorities to feed into the budget formulation process.

Civil Service Commission chairperson Dr Mariyawanda Nzuwah said in a speech read on his behalf that it was important to put appropriate structures with competent and a well remunerated civil service to improve efficiency.

"The civil service has a critical role to play towards the realisation of Zim-Asset targets as enshrined in the Constitution of Zimbabwe with particular reference to sections 194, 199 and 203," he said.

"Further to the creation of structures, the Commission ensures that competent and qualified personnel are placed into positions and remunerated in a way that motivates the timeous delivery of quality services."

Deputy Chief Secretary to the President and Cabinet Dr Ray Ndhlukula said the two-day retreat facilitated by the Eastern and Southern Africa Management Institute (ESAMI) will review the implementation of Zim-Asset over the past nine months it has been in operation.


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Source: AllAfrica


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