FINANCE and Economic Development Minister Mthuli Ncube has the unenviable task of prescribing a set of policies and measures to breathe life into a sluggish economy beset by galloping inflation and currency volatility when he presents the 2020 National Budget tentatively set for next week. Treasury sources told The Herald Finance and Business that the finance minister will present his budget statement on November 4, 2019, amid high expectations and a myriad of economic issues to address in order to stabilise the economy and place it on sustainable and fast growth path.
The minister needs a coterie of measures
and policies that stabilise unrelenting battering of the economy from galloping prices caused by the constantly rising exchange rate, shortage of foreign currency needed for imports as well as acute power
Amid reform induced currency and economic instability, Zimbabwe’s inflation has raced from a lowly 5,39 per cent in September 2018 to 175,5 percent by June this year, eroding purchasing power for the majority of people whose incomes have not grown in tandem with fast rising prices.
Further, the Treasury chief will announce measures to further drive the reform agenda under Transitional Stabilisation Programme (TSP), as
well as interventions to grow the economy, which is projected to contract by up to 6 percent this year on account of drought and impact of Cyclone Idai.
Already, inflation has skyrocketed from a lowly 5,39 percent in September 2018 just before the onset of ongoing reforms and a series of policy changes aimed at putting in place sustainable economic growth policies and measures.
The interventions will also seek to entrench initiatives targeted at fiscal consolidation and cutting budget deficits.
Other challenges in the economy include low industrial and agricultural production, little investment inflows, high cost of business, ease of doing business constraints, multiplicity of taxes and poor infrastructure.