Great Strides Made Since 2017

Since the coming in of the Second Republic in 2017, a lot of progress has been registered in various fields, setting the ground for achieving Vision 2030.

New projects have been implemented across various sectors, with the effect of ensuring that the economy is totally revived.

The results of these efforts are beginning to be realised in the various fields for the benefit of the people.

In fact, President Mnangagwa made it clear since he came into office that the focus was on the economy and development.

A glimpse of what has been achieved so far shows that the New Dispensation is taking transformation of the country seriously, and is instituting appropriate measures to achieve its objectives.

Electricity

The New Dispensation has committed itself to ensuring that it provides the basis for kick-starting industrialisation and modernisation through the provision of electricity.

Power projects being undertaken in Hwange alone will ensure that the country generates in excess of 6 900MW of power by 2023, making the country self-sufficient in electricity and an exporter to regional countries.

This availability of power will ensure confidence in investors, especially in the Special Economic Zones that are being set up in various parts of the country.

The expansion of Hwange Unit 7 and 8 is ongoing and is expected to contribute at least 600MW to the national grid, while other projects in the area include the Zambezi Gas and Coal that will generate 750MW and the Western Areas to input 600MW.

In the same Hwange area, Jinan will generate 600MW, Tsingshan 100MW and the Zimbabwe Zhongxin Electrical Energy 430MW.

President Mnangagwa recently toured the projects in Hwange and was impressed by the work being done.

The Government is also reviving the Bulawayo and Harare power stations and upgrading the whole electricity distribution infrastructure throughout the country.

A number of solar projects are being implemented in various parts of the country and are expected to contribute at least 300MW to start with.

Mining

The New Dispensation has managed to attract a number of investors in mining, who are set to contribute to the sector becoming a US$12 billion industry by 2023.

In this category, you talk of the US$4.2 billion Great Dyke Investment (GDI) platinum project in Mashonaland West, which is already taking shape and poised to become the second biggest platinum venture in Zimbabwe after Zimplats.

Work at the mine is progressing well, with rapid progress having been made on the first box cut where excavations have revealed optimistic results.

GDI is expected to starting exporting the mineral in 2022 to feed into the Government’s grand plan of economic recovery.

The US$4.2 billion Karo Resources platinum mine project in Mhondoro-Ngezi, also in Mashonaland West, is another massive mining project expected to change the course of the country’s development.

The mine is set to employ over 25 000 people and many others in downstream industries when fully operational.

The lithium mining venture, owned by Arcadia just outside Harare, is another huge game changer in the mining sector, which has already secured Special Economic Zone status.

In the last few weeks, Australia Stock Exchange-listed concern, Invictus Energy, obtained an Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) from the Environmental Management Agency (EMA), which allowed the company to move on the ground at its Muzarabani oil and gas project.

A lot is also happening in the diamond sector, where Chinese firm Anjin has returned to Chiadzwa diamond fields, in a move expected to boost the sector by increasing production of the gems.

Gold production is targeted to increase, while coal production is being ratcheted through the opening of new mines.

Economy

A lot has been happening in the economy, with reforms starting to show results in various sectors, in the process restoring confidence in business and the general public.

When the local currency was re-introduced last year, some doubted the move, perhaps driven by past experiences when the onslaught against the Zimdollar led to depreciation.

At first, the re-introduced local currency appeared to go in the same direction, but this time it had nothing to do with economic fundamentals, but rogue people out to make profits through the parallel market foreign currency exchange.

The monetary authorities moved in to stabilise the currency through instituting tough measures against companies and individuals in the habit of unorthodox currency business.

Measures were taken against counters on the Zimbabwe Stock Exchange and mobile money firms that specialised in speculation, thereby causing instability in the economy.

The introduction of the forex auction in recent weeks was the master stroke that capped all the positive moves taken earlier to stabilise the local currency, and resultantly the prices.

Now, the forex parallel market is almost dead, trading just a few margins above the market rate set by buyers and sellers at the forex auction market.

This resulted in the harnessing of inflation, as prices for goods and services have remained stabilised for weeks, with the trend expected to become permanent, thereby restoring confidence in the market.

This confidence in the economy is what investors have been searching for.

And the newly-established Zimbabwe Investment and Development Agency (ZIDA), another master stroke in the New Dispensation’s reform agenda, is expected to play a major role in attracting the investors.

Linked to ZIDA is the operationalisation of Special Economic Zones in various parts of the country, which will see investors being interested in these industrial and economic hubs.

The Government is already working on a Five-Year National Development Plan which recognises the Special Economic Zones as crucial in the attraction of investors.

A Chinese delegation is on a five-day working visit this week to input into the development plan, considering the vast experience the Asian economic giant has in the implementation of a successful economic turnaround programme.

Infrastructure

Infrastructure plays a crucial role in the development of a country, as it facilitates the logistics of doing business.

In light of this, the Government has set in a massive infrastructure development programme that has already seen $6.6 billion being spent out of the $25 billion that is being mobilised for investments across various capital formation projects and economic enablers.

Key projects being targeted include roads, rail, energy, water and sanitation.

Massive roadworks are taking place throughout the country, as well as construction of dams.

Agriculture

This sector remains the anchor of the country’s development, and the devastating effects on the economy has always been seen each time there is a drought.

To move away from relying on rain-fed agriculture, the New Dispensation has encouraged the acquisition of irrigation equipment such as centre-pivots to enhance the fight against climate change-induced droughts.

This will result in the revival of irrigation schemes in various parts of the country. Command Agriculture has been reformed into a private sector funded Smart Agriculture where farmers now have to deal with banks to access funding for farming.

The signing of the Global Compensation Deed to compensate white former farmers for improvements on land, coupled with a land audit and downsizing of farms, has given new impetus in agriculture.

The net effect of these moves is the assurance of respect for property rights and that land is open for investment.

If the newly introduced Pfumvudza farming method is implemented according to plan, then hunger at household level is set to vanish as communal farmers will be able to harvest enough to feed their families from a small piece of land.

Politics

The New Dispensation has been pre-occupied with opening up the democratic space to enhance good governance.

A number of reforms have been implemented to assure tenants of democracy like the right to demonstration, freedom of speech and access to information.

The Public Order and Security Act has been repealed, as it was seen to stifle the democratic space.

The Access to Information and Protection of Privacy Act also suffered the same fate for inhibiting freedom of the press.

Another major reform has been the instituting of the devolution concept, meant to empower local levels to make decisions on development and economic projects they can implement.

In the meantime, almost all pieces of legislation have been aligned with the Constitution.

Check Also

Mwonzora Hits Ground Running

Newly elected MDC-T President Douglas Mwonzora has taken control of the party and immediately hit …

This function has been disabled for Zimbabwe Today.