via Govt moves on economic empowerment strategy | The Herald October 28, 2015
Youth, Indigenisation and Economic Empowerment Minister Patrick Zhuwao yesterday said identification of specific needs of districts across the country and their resources will be a major driver to the implementation of the National Economic Empowerment Strategy. Speaking on the sidelines of an empowerment strategy workshop yesterday, Minister Zhuwao said the ministry had embarked on a process of developing the strategy in four stages.
“The first stage was the convening of the inaugural national economic empowerment conference. We are in the second phase which is the development of district economic empowerment strategies. These strategies will take into consideration realities of various districts with reference to developing a broad economic empowerment strategy premised on accelerating economic empowerment through localising terms of the plan.
“To be able to do that effectively we called officers from each districts within Mashonaland and Harare provinces to train them as facilitators. We will also be visiting other provinces and meeting our district officers,” said Minister Zhuwao. He said identification of resources available in different districts is fundamental in identifying specific needs of specific areas.
“The strategy being developed is premised on looking at resources available in particular districts and looking at what they can do successfully and also look at capabilities available so that we achieve each of our objectives.
“The national economic empowerment strategy goes beyond the Youth Fund although the youth is another process that we will be looking at but particularly critical is that in each and every district we have got land that is available and we also have water bodies that can assist towards first revitalisation of agriculture, and the agro-processing value chain enshrined in the 10-Point Plan,” said Minister Zhuwao.
He said Government has the responsibility to deliver two million jobs and that can only be achieved by unlocking value of the available resources for instance fruit processing. “We can do that by looking at resources that we have and unlocking those resources for example we have different fruits that are rotting every year without being processed. So we need to identify opportunities for economic empowerment and once we have identified those opportunities the money will naturally flow into the economy,” he said.
Minister Zhuwao recently pronounced the intention to introduce an empowerment levy where he said about $93 million could be raised. Zimbabwe in 2008 enacted the indiginisation law to compel all foreign owned entities to give away at least 51 percent of the stake to locals.