Denmark to inject $95m into Zim

HARARE - As Zimbabwe continues to struggle with securing funding for the development of its infrastructure projects due to high country political risk, the Denmark International Development Agency (Danida) is set to inject $95 million into the country.

This comes as Denmark, which closed its embassy in Zimbabwe in 2002 and re-established its diplomatic presence in 2009, is aiming to become the largest donor to the southern African country in 2014.

Erik Brøgger Rasmussen, the head of mission at the Royal Danish Embassy office in Harare, Charge d’ Affaires said the $95 million Denmark-Zimbabwe Development Partnership Programme for 2013 to 2015 is now in full implementation.

Running under the theme “A partnership for democracy and development”, the programme aims to build democratic institutions and promote universal human rights.

“We believe that development and state building must be based on human rights, democratic values, transparency and inclusion.

“The new constitution enshrines all of that,” said Rasmussen following a recent visit to Zimbabwe by a Danish programme inception review team.

The programme’s needs-based interventions are focused on supporting inclusive economic growth through private sector development, policy development, infrastructure rehabilitation and improving the productivity of the smallholder farmers.

In line with its focus on good governance, the programme supports the Judicial Service Commission’s Strategic Plan of 2012-2016 in order to contribute to improving the rule of law in Zimbabwe.

The key elements of Danish support for the judiciary reform process include the introduction of a case flow management system, building of magistrates’ courts and staff training.

The support has so far registered some notable results including a 65 percent decrease in case backlog at the magistrates’ courts, the completion of phase one of the construction of new court houses, a five percent increase in formal on the job staff training and a phased computerisation of the system.

Danida has also put in place innovative mechanisms for supporting the growth of smallholder agriculture in Zimbabwe.
To this end, The Royal Danish Embassy in Harare launched the Rural Agriculture Revitalisation Project and the Create Fund.

“This, we believe, will contribute to broad-based development in Zimbabwe as giving the right support mechanisms to farmers creates employment and stimulates economic activity across the whole agriculture value chain.

“At the same time, we hope that land in the future can be used as security for loans to farmers.

“That will really have a sustainable impact,” said Rasmussen.
As part of its human right focus, the Denmark-Zimbabwe Development Partnership Programme also supports the promotion of gender equality and the prevention of gender-based violence.

This component works to improve victims’ access to services that include legal aid, medical attention, shelter and psychological assistance as well as developing national policy frameworks and legislation.

In this sphere, Denmark, together with implementing partners has established 20 victim friendly courts around the country to create a more enabling environment for women and children.
In the area of infrastructure rehabilitation and policy development, Denmark is a partner in the Zim-Fund and the Analytical Multi-Donor Trust Fund.

This programme component is focused on the restoration and stabilisation of energy, water supply and sanitation services in Zimbabwe.

“This has seen rehabilitation work on the Hwange Power Station and municipal water treatment plants across the country.

Commenting on renewed engagement between the two countries Rasmussen said, “there are still some steps to be taken before the political relations become fully normalised.
“We continuously assess what steps to be taken next.
“We take those steps in tandem with our European Union colleagues.

“We have told the Zimbabwean government that it takes two to tango, so whenever we move on our side we also expect them to move; adoption of the new constitution last year was one of the bold steps and that is why we decided that we could have a full country programme.

“We will follow closely, the government’s efforts in implementing the constitution, hoping to see legislation passed soon in several areas.”

Denmark and Zimbabwe have a long history of cooperation dating back to the struggle for independence when the Scandinavian country was a strong supporter of the liberation movement.

Comments (3)

Propping up the regime!!!!!!

Naison - 10 June 2014

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Billabong - 10 June 2014

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