BY DR MASIMBA MAVAZA
Zimbabwe was shocked by the British Overview Report which cast a very thick dark cloud on Zimbabwe’s economy. In a direct attack on Zimbabwe’s sovereignty and economy the British Overview Report encouraged British citizens not to invest in Zimbabwe.
The intentions of the British was not hidden they came out very clear in their report. After attacking the Zimbabwean economy the British went on to state in their report that Zimbabwean Elections are in 2023. This was not a mention by the way. It was a calculated decampaigning strategy meant to soil the good name of the ruling party. This was politics packaged in an economic report.
The British Overview Report shows all under hand being played by the British in their push towards Regime change. Zimbabweans must treat this report with all the contempt it deserves.
Contrary to the BOR Zimbabwe has experienced a resurgence in economic activity, with GDP growth averaging about 3% percent during 2020-2021. Economic growth in Zimbabwe surpassed the average for Sub-Saharan Africa during this period. The economy rebounded significantly in the early years of the new dispensation averaging 3 percent growth during the pandemic.
Prior to 2020 Zimbabwe experienced periods of strong and weak economic performance. Real GDP growth rates averaged nearly 2.9 percent a year reflecting deliberate policies that promoted large-scale investment in domestic manufacturing and agriculture. The latter policies were motivated in large part by a need to achieve self-sufficiency following international sanctions against the Zimbabwean government.
It is a fact that Since 1980, Zimbabwe’s performance has been mixed, reflecting policy lapses and adverse weather conditions that affected agricultural output. The country recorded its strongest post-independence growth performance during 1980-90 with gross domestic product (GDP) growing by an average of around 5.5 percent, higher than the average for Sub-Saharan African (SSA) countries, while the population grew at about 3 percent.
But what is economic Growth Economic growth it is an increase in the production of goods and services over a specific period. To be most accurate, the measurement must remove the effects of inflation.
Let us remember that Zimbabwe in 1980, when it became independent from British rule, it inherited a developed and predominantly white controlled economy. Since then, the government of Zimbabwe instituted a number of reforms that transformed the economy from being more of socialism to more of capitalism, as it is today More importantly, is the change in trade dynamics between 1980 and the post 2000 period.
National, global and regional trade developments and resultant policies have also contributed to the noted trade shift. The historical decade of economic contraction and political developments, from the start of the new millennium, affected the country’s real economy, as was manifested in shrinking production capacity and hence the composition, value, volume and source of both exports and imports.
The measuring of the GDP became biased when Zimbabwe tried to reach an economic emancipation and extricate itself from the policies which favoured the white minority. The over celebrated economy was measured against the white population and the black majority lives did not mater. The moment Zimbabwe interpreted its independence to mean economic freedom the world looks at our economy differently.
While the British try to jinx our economy and rubbish the efforts being done by Mthuli NCUBE the World Bank gave a different view of our economy. The world bank in its March 2021 report said “After facing an economic crisis exacerbated by the COVID-19 (coronavirus) pandemic, Zimbabwe’s economy is set to rebound by 2.9% in 2021, supported by recovery of agriculture and due to base effects. Expected bumper harvest and continuation of rule-based monetary policy will stabilize food prices and improve food security. However, disruptions caused by the pandemic will continue to weigh on economic activity in Zimbabwe, limiting employment growth and improvements in living standards.”
The world bank reported further that
“In 2020, gross domestic product (GDP) is estimated to have contacted by 8% for a second year in a row as COVID-19 halted economic recovery. Operating restrictions led to depressed manufacturing, non-mineral exports, and hospitality, trade, and transport sectors. Sales of manufacturing and services firms in July 2020 were about half sales in 2019. Supply-side shocks subsided after easing of mobility restrictions, but domestic demand was weak in an environment of triple-digit inflation, high unemployment and income losses.
Demand for imports increased as several years of drought necessitated increased imports of maize and electricity while the pandemic presented new demands for lab equipment and medical supplies. The current account was in surplus, due to high remittances inflows and trade surplus.”
It is very clear that the slowing down of our economy during 2020 was due to COVID-19 which was not originated by Zimbabwe’s miss-governing as the British want us to believe.
Fiscal and monetary policy responses to the pandemic have been limited to contain volatility of prices. Fiscal policy remained tight despite wage pressures and additional spending needs to respond to the pandemic and growing number of poor. The fiscal balance turned into a small deficit of 1.3% of GDP in 2020. In June 2020, the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe operationalized the reserve money targeting framework, floated the exchange rate, and introduced foreign auction. These measures helped to stabilize the parallel market exchange rate and reduce the parallel market premium, although it remained distortionary. As a result, inflation slowed down to 322% in February 2021 from its peak of 838% in July 2020.
The pandemic and its impacts disrupted livelihoods, especially in urban areas. Wage earners in urban areas and the extreme poor were disproportionally affected by the pandemic, as their pay was either cut or not received at all.
Rural households rely less on wage employment and nonfarm businesses.
Zimbabwe has done well in fighting the pandemic.
Project preparations became a success for the Health Emergency Preparedness Response Trust Fund to contribute to the country’s National Vaccination and Deployment Strategy in line with a request from the Government. Zimbabwe has reached a two million mark in the vaccination.
This is a feat never expected by any one in the world.
There has been some stealing of COVID funds or misuse there of but this is not at the proportion of the Americans who stole over ten billion in COVID FUNDS. Or the very British whose prime-mister’s girlfriend made millions from Covid funds. This stinks to the highest level.
We are aware that The latest economic analysis for the country says the COVID-19 pandemic and its impacts disrupted livelihoods.
The pandemic further disrupted provision of basic public services in health, education and social protection, which were strained prior to the pandemic, affecting poor citizens the most. the report warns that there is a risk of reversing some of Zimbabwe’s previous progress on human capital development.
The Zimbabwe Economic situation is overcoming Economic Challenges, Natural Disasters, and the Pandemic.
The report by the British is a shameful biased report. Zimbabwe’s economy is bouncing back in 2021 as the country shrugs off the effects of the coronavirus pandemic and the government takes further measures to stabilise the currency, finance minister Mthuli Ncube said. We as Zimbabweans should go by our minister’s word his reporting is not biased and he is the one on the ground. His report is corroborated by the World Bank which is more reliable than the biased British report.
“Gross domestic product is expected to expand by 7.4 per cent after contracting by an estimated 4.5 per cent this year,”Minister Ncube said in a budget strategy paper presented to reporters and businesspeople in the capital, Harare.
Growth next year will be anchored by agriculture and mining, which forecast to grow by 11.3 per cent and 11 per cent respectively, he said.
The country generates the bulk of its foreign currency earnings from exports of tobacco, gold and platinum.
So Zimbabwe is thriving in the glory of progress.
We must remember that Economic growth is an increase in the production of goods and services over a specific period. To be most accurate, the measurement must remove the effects of inflation. Zimbabwe has had a bumper harvest thanks to Pfumvudza project. How on earth can any one say our economy has gone down.
While the history of the global pandemic is still being written, one enduring outcome of the past year will certainly be its effect on the imperative of sustainability. This shared trauma served to remind us just how fragile we are as a community, as a global economy, and as stewards of the earth’s climate. The difficult work of improving environmental, social, and governance norms is taking place at all levels of society, and the resulting changes will have profound implications for investors.
So investors should be afraid of investing in the whole world if we judge by the way the world was not prepared to fight COVID-19. It is not fair to single out Zimbabwe and issue a false alarm.
It is surely very safe to invest in Zimbabwe and it is only the figment of a rotten imagination in the mind of those who believe that Zimbabwe is not safe for investment.
Another significant issue highlighted by investors who are benefiting by investing in Zimbabwe over the past year is the peace and security prevailing in Zimbabwe.
The confused economic intelligence operatives must realise that as a nation Zimbabwe is pleased to provide latest thinking on issues that we believe will affect investors in the months and years to come.
Zimbabwe has a global footprint and diverse capabilities to enable it to offer both the insight of our economy and the product solutions to help investors realize the possibilities and advantages of investing in Zimbabwe.
Gross Domestic Product (GDP) growth in Zimbabwe is projected to reach 3.9 percent in 2021, a significant improvement after a two-year recession, according to the World Bank Zimbabwe Economic Update (ZEU) launched in June 2021.
Zimbabwe has enjoyed peace and tranquility which is rare in other countries.
There has never been a human rights complain in Zimbabwe since the new dispensation. Even the detractors have sang praises of peace in Zimbabwe. The investment has taken a new high and Zimbabwe remains open for business.
One point we must all bear in mind is that it is the same
detractors who decide what is a safe environment for investment. Their word is tainted with self serving idiocy and wants to keep Zimbabwe under their thump.
As a nation it is enough we can not take it any longer. People should learn to mind their problems. Right now the UK and America are crawling out of Afghanistan with their tails in between their legs. Instead of concentrating on that they make it their business to destroy Zimbabwe.
The whole issue about Zimbabwe not being safe for investment is calculated to undermine the efforts done by Zimbabwe. It is a clear effort to promote the opposition in the forth coming elections in 2023.
Zimbabwe is the only country we can call ours in the whole world and it is our duty to guard our interests jealously.