Brazil rules out ZimAsset funding

HARARE - Brazil says it will not financially support Zimbabwe’s projects under its ambitious economic blueprint, the Zimbabwe Agenda for Sustainable Socio-Economic Transformation (Zim Asset).

The country’s ambassador to Zimbabwe Marcia Maro Da Silva told the businessdaily that the southern African nation is too rich to beg for financial assistance.

“As a rule, Brazil does not give any support to sovereign nations and we don’t give out hand-outs either. Usually, we find synergies and business opportunities where we can work with people on various projects,” she said.

“Zimbabwe is a rich country and does not need donations but investments. ZimAsset offers opportunities for Brazil to come and invest in infrastructure and other sectors but there is need for clarity on the country’s economic policies,” added Silva.

This comes as the cash-strapped southern African country has been struggling to secure $27 billion to fund projects enunciated in ZimAsset, which is supposed to guide economic development programmes until December 2018.

The blueprint, which borrows from the ruling party Zanu PF’s election manifesto and previous national development programmes, identifies four major clusters, namely food security and nutrition, social services and poverty reduction, infrastructure and utilities and value addition and beneficiation.

ZimAsset comes on the back of a cocktail of economic policies that have dismally failed to breathe life into the country’s economy.

These range from the Economic Structural Adjustment Programme (Esap) to Zimbabwe Programme for Economic and Social Transformation (Zimprest) to the abandoned Medium Term Plan that was supposed to run until next year, among others.

Zimbabwe, which according to the international Monetary Fund has an external debt of approximately $10,7 billion, is failing to get loans due its bad payment record.

China — long considered Zimbabwe’s all-weather friend — recently conceded that it would only provide funding to the country on the condition that the loan is securitised on vast mineral resources.

“My government is committed to give our support to Zimbabwe’s economic recovery,” said outgoing Chinese ambassador Lin Lin.

“What I can say now is that the two sides are carrying out discussions on lines of credit provided by Chinese financial institutions as proposed by Zimbabwean side using your minerals as kind of security.

We are looking forward to reach a kind of an agreement on that issue and I hope sometime this year,” he said recently.

Economist John Robertson says without right policies, which include the respect for property rights and curbing endemic corruption, Zim Asset will remain a pipe dream.

“The policy does not only need money, but also policies that would make people make that level of commitment. Policies that will not damage property and ownership rights,” he said.

Robertson noted that the economic blueprint did not have a concrete milestones and substance to remedy the country’s economic ills.

“The policy is not a plan, but a description of a destination because it has neither indication nor route of how to get there,” Robertson said.

He said plans to get some of that funding from Diaspora remittances was bound to fail as the efforts to securitise minerals underground.

Comments (10)

To hell with this ZimAsset rubbish.We need FDI which can only be possible if we put our heads together as brothers & sisters in one Zimbabwe. We don't eat party politics dza Rugare Gumbo. All corrupt pple should be fired from gvt or parrastatals.

MARARA - 20 May 2014

Brazil did not rule out funding ZimAsset but rather it ruled out donations.....Correct me if I am wrong but ZimAsset is not premised on funding fromn donations........As the Ambassador said it is about finding synergies and investment opportunities so eg if Brazil decides too fund dualisation of Harare-Nyamapanda Highway it does so on the basis of PPP and gets a BOOT agreement(according to ZimAsset) Daily News calm down.....Tsvangirayi will get another chance in 2018...zve 2013 is past please accept it.

wezhira wezhara - 21 May 2014

The big problem we have in our country is that we have thick heads like Rugare Gumbo who just utter rubbish and take that as government policy. For how long will we allow these stubborn fools to lead us? ZIMASSET is a cheap document that will get us nowhere. They have looked east to China, they have looked south to Brazil. Now it's time we looked at ourselves and check what it is we are not doing right. We are a rich country and yet we are so poor, let us re-look our policies and weed out corruption. And most of all, let us obey and respect our own constitution.

Dr Know - 21 May 2014

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ORIGINAL - 21 May 2014

It is clear that no nation can support us, and by us I mean the government, as long as we continue to hear stories of corruption and nothing is ever done about those corrupt in public office. All they get is coverage in the media on their ability to steal, divert and convert state funds and assets to their own use so who in their right minds would want to assist in this sort of behavior. And as if that is not enough you have no policy in place that can lure private enterprise into investing in this country when you have 51% in place. The president and a few others have mentioned here and there that the 51% is not a hard and fast stance in the last few months but this has not been backed up by any solid reform or actual laws passed in parliament. SO TELL ME NOW ONCE MORE WHY ANYONE WOULD INVEST UNDER THESE CONDITIONS

lovethynation - 21 May 2014

Lovethynation spot on. I wonder why some pple cannot accept reality.They are only concerned about staying in power at whatever cost. They are even blind to the shrinking of their revenue base. WHAT A SHAME!!!

DINGINDIRA - 21 May 2014

What country can afford to lend us 27 billion? Brazil has massive social issues of its own...right now demos are underway prior to the world cup. We are led by fools really.

mukwerekwere - 21 May 2014

Just ask yourself. In your right senses would you invest in such a country under such conditions? 51%/49%? Let's be serious, if just for once.

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