Zim to host investment conference

HARARE - Zimbabwe will next month host an investment conference aimed at providing a platform for potential investors, business and government to come up with ways to increase the flow of investment into the country.

The programme also includes discussions on various issues affecting the country and lessons learned from countries which have seen their economies grow in recent years.

The conference is being organised by Oxlink Capital and coordinated by The Office of the President and Cabinet.

It will run under the theme “Zimbabwe: Towards a Preferred Investment Destination.”

Oxlink Capital is working with an inter-ministerial committee that is providing guidance to ensure that the conference succeeds.

The committee includes the Special Economic Zones, the Infrastructure Development Bank of Zimbabwe, Zimbabwe Investment Authority, ministry of Industry and Commerce and the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe.

The conference to be held on March 6, 2017 at a local hotel comes two months after President Emmerson Mnangagwa launched the national investment policy statement that outlines the guidelines for investing in and harnessing the opportunities that abound in Zimbabwe.

The president launched the guidelines, titled Investment Guidelines and Opportunities in Zimbabwe, at a preparatory meeting for the World Economic Forum meeting to be held in last month in Davos, Switzerland.

Mnangagwa said Zimbabwe’s economy will be founded on sound market principles and principles of legal protection that encourage and protect private enterprise and the fruits thereof, while gainfully interacting with strategic public enterprises run professionally and profitably, all to yield a properly run national economy in which there is room and opportunity for everyone.

Zimbabwe has been experiencing very low levels of foreign direct investment in the region relative to its peers, with the high country risk, corruption and failing infrastructure being cited as the major impediments to attracting investment.

Economists say Zimbabwe’s current debt and energy problems could be just the catalysts the country needs for radical reforms that may convince foreign investors to return.

With no domestic savings and empty government coffers, Zimbabwe is being forced to make changes that will win investors over.

The coming in of the new dispensation has renewed hope and ignited interest in the prospects on investing in Zimbabwe, with both the domestic and international community expressing desire to invest in the various spheres of the economy.

“The government commits to treating all foreign and domestic investors and investments as favourably as any other investor in like situation in relation to the establishment, expansion and operation of their investments, subject to such exceptions as are provided for in domestic laws, regulations and policies,” Mnangagwa said.

Speakers expected at the conference include Energy minister Simon Khaya Moyo, Local Government minister July Moyo, Industry minister Mike Bimha, ICT minister Supa Mandiwanzira and Deputy Finance minister Terrence Mukupe among others.

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