IT gives me great pleasure to be addressing you today for the first time after the ushering in of the new political dispensation in our country since my inauguration on the 24th of November 2017.
We are all agreed that our economy had deteriorated so much that we now need to work together, pulling together in the same direction to resuscitate our economy.
Outsiders can only complement our efforts.
I therefore wish, from the outset, to give you commitment that my Government is ready to work with you to achieve the sustainable growth of our economy and the improvement of the living standards of our people.
In my inauguration speech, I stated that the thrust 0f my new Government would be premised on ‘market-based’ approaches that work hand in hand with improved efficiency in public administration.
I strongly believe that it is the duty of my Government to create a ‘conducive environment for you, as the private sector to conduct your business’. I am convinced that, as your businesses grow, you will be in a position to create jobs for most of our youths, who are currently unemployed.
I am aware that most of our businesses require injection of new capital from foreign investors. I want to reiterate that all investments will be safe and secure in Zimbabwe. Foreign investors will be able to repatriate profits from their investments.
All Bilateral Investment Promotion and Protection Agreements (BIPPAs) will be honoured. I have directed the Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Trade to ratify all international treaties that Zimbabwe is signatory to.
We should all strive to make Zimbabwe a ‘safe destination’ for foreign investment. My Government has embarked on an extensive process to revamp our physical and social infrastructure to position Zimbabwe in readiness for investment.
In this endeavour, we are willing to get into Public Private Partnerships (PPPs), with both local and foreign investors. A legal framework, by way of the Joint Ventures Act, has already been put in place to facilitate such partnerships.
In order to encourage industry clustering, and backward and forward linkages, Government is committed to operationalising Special Economic Zones (SEZs), as a way of attracting investment, particularly those geared to creating jobs, and to promoting value addition, beneficiation, increased capacity utilisation and exports.
Special incentives will be provided in these Zones. I wish to dispel the illusion that the Zones are only for foreign investors. You, as Zimbabweans business people, can team up with foreign investors or on your own, set up in the Zones as long as you meet the set criteria.
My Government has made a commitment to fight corruption in all its forms. I am aware that the scourge does not only exist in the public sector, but is rampant in the private sector. Let me, once more, warn those involved, that they must desist from corrupt practices forthwith. Swift justice will be served wherever corruption exists.
We should all aspire to be a clean nation.
The manner in which we previously managed our politics, both nationally and internationally, led our country to be labelled a high risk pariah State. My Government acknowledges that Zimbabwe is a member of the global community and cannot go it alone.
We will therefore take definitive steps to re-engage those nations that have had issues with us in the past, and Zimbabwe will comply with its international obligations. We are also ready to take measures to ensure that we settle our debts and enter into new relationships.
Before l conclude, let me take this opportunity to officially launch our National Investment Policy Statement, that ushers in a new economic order in Zimbabwe. The statement recognises that the people of Zimbabwe are the cornerstone of our success, and are the strongest pillar to build a strong and sustainable economy.
It also provides the principle for effective investment production and protection, the modernisation of the legal framework for investments, as well as an elaborate reform action plan in line with international best practices.
Allow me now, Ladies and Gentlemen, to conclude by sincerely thanking the organisers, and you all, for inviting me to this meeting. I am convinced that we should have more of these meetings, where we hold frank discussions and the sharing of ideas on how to move our country forward.
As I stated at the beginning, we should always be cognisant of the fact that we have a shared destiny, and it is us together, who can shape Zimbabwe for the better.
I thank you.
This is the speech by His Excellency, the President Cde E. D. Mnangagwa on the occasion of the Preparatory Meeting for Davos with members of the business community in Harare yesterday.
Article Source: The Herald