By Tendai Matunhu
Minister of Finance and Economic Development, Professor Mthuli Ncube has highlighted that Zimbabwe is serious about setting up off shore financial service centres which will direct foreign investments to Zimbabwe.
Speaking to delegates at a post budget review breakfast meeting running under the theme ‘Taking Stock: Charting the Way Forward,’ in Harare today, Minister Ncube said, “We are very serious and optimistic about having an offshore financial services sector. I am confident about this because of the people of Zimbabwe and the skills they offer. This will direct foreign investment into Zimbabwe. We are serious about setting up an offshore financial services centre in Zimbabwe to compete with Mauritius."
The breakfast meeting was hosted by the Ministry of Finance and Economic Development together with Zimbabwe Economics Society in partnership with Alpha Media Holdings
Minister Ncube also highlighted that they were not measuring "like terms," saying Year on Year data is not accurate because this time last year, Zimbabwe had a 1:1 peg with the USD. He said if the current price was calculated factoring in the interbank rate of 1:8, it will be clear that the prices haven't gone up.
He said industries like mining and manufacturing had benefited from rebates.
"There are companies that have benefited greatly from rebates as well as many industries. Sectors like mining and manufacturing have benefited. Another example is in the tourism industry where tour operators have been able to bring in buses,” he said.
Minister Ncube said he was pleased with the Current Account Balance which is positive and that civil servants would be getting their bonuses in November.
He also highlighted that in terms of electricity; Government was refurbishing the coal plants and looking to solar power Zimbabwe in order to restore power supply.
In terms of health, Minister Ncube said they would continue to close the necessary gaps adding that construction and refurbishment of rural health centres and hospitals countrywide was underway.