Zimbabwe government clueless, as economy burns

via Govt clueless, as economy burns – DailyNews Live by John Kachembere  21 MARCH 2014

For most Zimbabweans, these are trying times.

The country has entered a period of deflation, salaries for those lucky to be still employed are depressed amid a tightening liquidity crisis and basic goods remain priced out of the reach of many.

But even as the economy shows signs of imploding, the country is riveted with stunning revelations in the media of managers of State-owned firms earning millions of dollars in pay while the economy stutters.

Insiders say the Salarygate stories have been allowed to run to divert attention from government’s appalling handling of the economy.

Critics say President Robert Mugabe, who won last year’s elections  after promising 2,2 million jobs, continues to fiddle while the economy is burning.

Figures released last week by the Zimbabwe Statistical Agency show that the economy is sliding towards deflation, a situation that could see overall output and competitiveness of industry being affected, leading to a further decline in employment levels.

Charles Msipa, the Confederation of Zimbabwe Industries (CZI) president, said the manufacturing industry was in the “intensive care unit” with most companies in the country operating below 40 percent of capacity utilisation as a result of high finance costs, electricity and water shortages, ageing equipment and stiff competition from cheap imports.

As part of efforts to halt the economic decline, government last year launched the ambitious economic blueprint, the Zimbabwe Agenda for Sustainable Socio-Economic Transformation (Zim Asset).

However, what the Zanu PF-led government had sold as a panacea for Zimbabwe’s economic depression is failing to provide the required cure, creating a deep sense of disillusionment among business leaders and ordinary citizens.

University of Zimbabwe economics lecturer Tony Hawkins says without a financial bailout, Zimbabwe’s economy will continue to slide.

“Without an International Monetary Fund (IMF) deal leading to eventual debt forgiveness, economic growth will continue to be hamstrung, not by economic sanctions, as ministers and many business people claim, but by an unsustainable debt burden,” Hawkins told the Daily News.

“Just as something will have to give politically — the current ‘factioneering’ will further undermine governance, vividly illustrated by Salarygate — so too economically.”

Hawkins asserts that if the Chinese do not come to the party soon and in a big way, the current economic malaise will deepen.

“Growth at 3,4 percent in 2013 was the slowest since dollarisation five years ago,” he said.

“Unemployment, already well over 50 percent of the workforce, will rise inexorably, the brain drain will intensify and living standards fall further.

“The difficult economic decisions that should have been made over the past five years are not going to go away. Nor are they likely to be taken while ministers and officials, in fear of losing their jobs, squabble over the succession. It is time to draw a line in the sand and move on.”

Market experts have also warned that unless government clarifies its indigenisation policies, foreign investment — itself a vital cog in economic revival — will continue skirting the country in favour of friendly investment destinations.

The controversial law, which was enacted in 2010, forces foreign-owned firms to cede 51 percent to locals.

“Some of the country’s legislation needs to be revamped to allow for foreign direct investment,” said George Guvamatanga, the president of the Bankers’ Association of Zimbabwe.

“For instance, there is need to clarify the indigenisation policy and realign it with other legislation.”

Guvamatanga noted that the indigenisation regulations were in conflict with the Zimbabwe Stock Exchange (ZSE) regulations on foreign investors.

“There is no alignment of ZSE foreign investment requirements and indigenisation regulations,” he said.

“For instance, the Indigenisation law doesn’t provide adequate clarity on someone who wants to bring investment in Zimbabwe by buying shares on a ZSE-listed company and also wants to invest in an unlisted company.

“Capital by its nature requires clarity.”

The Zimbabwe National Chamber of Commerce says robust measures to attract money into the economy must be explored.

“Steps in reforming the investment environment, reducing the country risk rating and doing business reforms should be a priority,” said a senior official with ZNCC.

With the economic environment slowly receding to the 2008 levels, infrastructure and social services delivery in the country are deteriorating at a fast pace.

Despite all the signs pointing to a failing economy, Mugabe has remained mum, a development that has been described by analysts as an indication of government’s  cluelessness in turning around the economy.

This week, opposition leader Morgan Tsvangirai implored Mugabe, under whom he served as prime minister in a fractious coalition government since the disputed and bloody elections in 2008, to swallow his pride and acknowledge the deepening economic crisis.

“The economic crisis is a symptom of the political crisis of legitimacy because that is the one that undermines the confidence in the economy,” Tsvangirai told the Daily News.

“You know, for the last five years, the economy was stabilised because of confidence in the economy due to political stability.

“Now, because if the crisis of legitimacy, as a result of a rigged election, already, it’s a crisis that has undermined economic confidence to the extent that all sectors have now been affected. There is a legitimacy crisis,” he said.

Nonetheless, the Zanu PF government remains adamant that the latest economic blueprint will perform miracles and drive economic growth.

 

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23 comments on “Zimbabwe government clueless, as economy burns
  1. Senzachena says:

    Its on the way to implosion, not long now. Wait until the cannot pay the Security Forces. Zim$ here we come! So much easier to just print as required.

  2. Tjingababili says:

    NEVER DID, NEVER WILL HAVE A CLUE!

  3. Roving Ambassador says:

    Just waiting for the fire works. Their hope is with the chinese.They will wait until ZANU is on its knees,then pounce.they will grab whatever they can for a song.

  4. zvichanaka says:

    Print the USDollar..the Yen…the Ruble ect!

  5. Rumba says:

    The Predident did not “win” the elections

  6. Ndebvu Mukomichi says:

    Empty Political Vessels- Loud than Ever!

    1. Hey Mr Clue-full, you say our govt is clueless- tell us what you think our ZPF govt should do. Otherwise you sound like a broken record – to which noone is dancing anymore.

    2. Good at Describing the nation’s problems- Now give us some proposed solutions!- under conditions of regime change sanctions.

    3. Investment by Outsiders: This has and will always be voluntary, and where regime change merchants have put our country under sanctions- this route is closed. Therefore think again Mr Clue-full!

    4. Deflation/ Unemployment- These we already know. They are part of our growing pains- allow us to go thru them as we move towards prosperity.

    5. Indigenisation laws: they are as clear as day. Real investors are coming even as you wail and mourn about your bogus ones!

    6. Our govt: We the voting majority are happy with our govt who have given us land- bumper harvest iyo!; Mines- mangoda hobho! No matter how many big words you use to negatively describe our govt and country! So who is the clueless one now.

    • Reverend says:

      HeheheheheheheheheheHahahahahaha…That is sooo funnneee ndebvu, I just cant believe I just wasted my time reading that…what a good joke!

    • Jono Austin says:

      You should be on Mukadota-you could make your fortune as a clown

    • NBS says:

      Try repentance before a holy and just God. Then restoration will come . And that is your answer Ndebvu. It is as plain as daylight to spiritually discerning person. Your excuses just do not wash.

    • Parangeta says:

      I will give you a solution, idiot Zanoid!

      1. Get rid of Mugabage, disGrace and Robber Jnr.
      2. Get rid of ZANU-PF and the Military goons.
      3. Throw them all in prison, for high treason.
      4. Have a REAL , non Nikuv election, asap.
      5. Remove all assaults on Freedom.
      6. Respect Human and Title Rights.
      7. Get every thieving Chink out of our Country.

      The day that happens the West, East, North
      and South (black, white, brown, hopefully no yellow),
      will FLOOD our Beloved Country, with ForEx,
      Investment, Capital, Manufacturing and real farmers.

      Zimbabwe’s fortunes will skyrocket, the GDP will
      grow tenfold,the $10 billion IMF/WB debt will be paid
      off with the stolen funds confiscated from Mugabe and
      his pillager’s BankAccounts in Singapore, Hong Kong
      and Beijing.

      That your SOLUTION Zanoid fool!
      8.

  7. Kitsi-yatota says:

    we as zimbabwean have a crisis of expectation. mugabe did not take this country on a silver plate. he died for it. why are we afraid to die for it as well. Job is back, he is vigilant, he can take up an AK47 I can take a bhazuka. Lets go to the trenches guys and be future leaders and dead heros. i m ready to do it

    • Parangeta says:

      You seem very confused. Mugabage did NOT get this
      Country on a silver platter, yes he did!

      You say he died for for it, he’s still alive
      unfortunately!

      Job is back, he is vigilant, what the hell does that mean?
      He is back because he stole the elections.
      Vigilant he is not, he is senile!

      We are the ones that will soon take up M16′s from the USA,
      not Chink and Rusky AK47′s. See you to hell Zanoid!

  8. Jono Austin says:

    Zimbabwe will never be a colony again. Indigenisation is irrevocable. Land ‘reform’ is irrevocable. Mukomichi is as clueless as the murderous Government. He likes to ask questions. OK then, genius, why is massive unemployment ‘growing pains?’ If we are growing why is unemployment increasing? Also what ‘bumber’ harvests are you talking about? Please inform the nation of the latest maize tonnages compared to say 1999? What about cotton, groundnuts, wheat? You are obviously a zanu lickspittle who revels in rape and pillage. Zanu are nothing but murderous thugs who enjoy raping women-Gukurahundi remember!

    • Parangeta says:

      The only bumper crop was tobacco, that deforested
      our Countryside.
      Food, to eat, is way down, worse than in previous years.

      Both INDIGENIZATION and LAND REFORM will be rescinded.
      Go lick some Gukurahundi boots!

  9. Growing pains indeed.This country is long out of it’s teens.

  10. NBS says:

    ZPF are incapable of ingesting the plain and simple truth. Gwede Mantashe of the ANC couldn’t have said it better when he said the ANC would not be following the Zimbabwe example of the land grab as it destroyed the economy. ZPF didn’t like that did they. It is the truth tho’

  11. Jono Austin says:

    Ndebvu there is one simple solution to the disaster in Zimbabwe-Zanu must resign en masse and be disbanded. To use Robespierre’s words, ‘Zanu must die that the country may live’

  12. Ndebvu Mukomichi says:

    Mangy Dogs Barking at a Moving Train: Zero Effect!

    Our party is not made from the resigning material. Check its history from the liberation war. times were tougher then, but our party persevered.

    DNA- Even now the strength of character has kicked in- sellouts beware! Our party is here to stay- until final victory and beyond.

    The Resigners: If this is your answer to every problem, then: Have a go. Resign from Zim, From this forum or even life itself. We Zimbos, our party and govt are uninterested.

  13. Small axe says:

    Ndebvu Mukomichi sounds a lot like Murimi

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