FINANCE Minister Mthuli Ncube has hinged the 2021 national budget on a good agricultural season, increased mining revenue and a stable currency.
The Finance Minister has also proposed a ban on the importation of second-hand motor vehicles aged 10 years and more, with only a few exceptional cases allowed.
He said he believes the economy will rebound from the shocks of the coronavirus and is also pinning hopes on a tourism recovery.
However, tourism growth largely depends on the Covid-19 pandemic not worsening, and the budget has an “expenditure ceiling of ZW$421.6bn [US$5.08bn]”, he said.
DOWNLOAD the FULL 2021 BUDGET HERE.
Ncube is projecting a 7.4% overall GDP growth, with year-on-year inflation by the end of 2021 reaching 9%.
These are some of the highlights of the budget:
- ZW$46.3bn will be allocated to agriculture with the hope of growing the sector to a US$8.2bn (R124.83bn) industry;
- The ministry of transport will receive ZW$30.1bn for infrastructure development, with dualisation of the Harare-Beitbridge highway to be allocated ZW$19bn;
- A post-Covid recovery plan for the tourism sector will take up ZW$1.8bn;
- Zimbabwe’s water sources countrywide are in an appalling state and Ncube resolved to allocate ZW$10.7bn — while an additional ZW$3.9bn will be set aside to deal with water issues;
- The ministry of information technology has been allocated ZW$2bn as the country attempts integration into the digital revolution;
- Local authorities and provincial councils will get ZW$19.5bn proposed for devolution. While the ministry of local government walks away with ZW$10.1bn;
- The ministry of health will be allocated a staggering ZW$54.7bn, largely driven by how Covid-19 has exposed how badly the sector has been funded, and how poor its infrastructure and equipment is;
- Higher education will receive ZW$14.4bn; and
- The security sector, namely defence, will get ZW$23.8bn while the police under home affairs receive ZW$23.6bn.
On the importation of second-hand hand cars older than ten years, special permits for such imports will be acceptable and special waiver consideration will be made for mining, agriculture and tourism sectors.