Elita Chikwati Senior Reporter
Sanctions imposed on Zimbabwe are outdated and should be removed as they benefit neither Zimbabwe nor the United States of America, the authors of the hostile policy, Foreign Affairs and International Trade Minister Dr Sibusiso Busi Moyo has said.
He said this on Wednesday when he had lunch with the Westminster Africa Business Group in London, United Kingdom.
Minister Moyo said the removal of the sanctions was now long overdue.
“It (sanctions) is something which is now in a former page; in a book which you have read before twice and which we do not want to read anymore. It is not serving the US, the US businesspeople or Zimbabwean people and, therefore, it is outdated,” said Minister Moyo.
“We have been directly dealing with Americans themselves and that is why I was telling you that Americans have seen light in Zimbabwe. They have started coming in serious hordes of numbers in terms of corporates.
“They (General Electric from the US) are going to be building a 2 400MW hydro power station in Zimbabwe. They are going to be investing in the health sector, rolling out a wide and an elaborate health centre.
“They have been offered to go into methane gas deposits and they are already on the ground.”
GE and Power Construction of China have been awarded the tender to implement the 2 400MW Batoka Gorge Hydro Power project at about US$4 billion.
Other US firms are engaged in various economic activities in Zimbabwe, while others are scouting for opportunities, making a strong case for the removal of the ruinous sanctions.
Minister Moyo said although the US has refused to lift the sanctions, Zimbabwe continues to be hospitable by offering its citizens investment opportunities.
The US was also allowed to observe last year’s harmonised elections.
Said Minister Moyo: “We have decided in a way, while we are telling them that the sanctions are outdated, but we have also decided to say American corporates, ignore the outdated piece of paper and move on so that the system, the Congress in the US, can realise that it is not worth any more.
“We have also been engaging Congress, even the actual proponents of the sanctions, even the revised position, Senator Jeff Flake and Chris Coons. We actually invited them to Zimbabwe and they came.
“We have invited all these and they came and looked at the situation and they are also talking to them, feeling internally embarrassed about having been pushing on for the existence of the sanctions; but it is in the US system.
“It is a process rather than an event and we think at the end of the day, they are going to see light and President (Donald) Trump will be able to see light one day,” he said.
Minister Moyo visited London, United Kingdom on a four-day re-engagement programme to strengthen bilateral relations and to woo investment into the country.