via Parastatal clean-up on the cards | The Herald 11 December 2014
GOVERNMENT is set to undertake a “thorough” audit of some State enterprises to identify their operational challenges before implementing public enterprises reforms.
Finance and Economic Development Minister Patrick Chinamasa revealed this when he announced a $110 million grant availed by the African Development Bank at a Press conference yesterday, saying part of the funds would go towards the exercise.
“There is an imperative need to do a thorough due diligence audit of parastatals so that we are informed not just about whether people are stealing money or not (that), we are informed of the absence of management systems in those parastatals, but we are also informed of lack of management capacities in those institutions,” said Minister Chinamasa.
“So out of the $110 million facility I am going to devote some resources towards that effort.”
Despite being heralded as one of the quick hits that could assist in turning around Zimbabwe’s economy, nothing much has been achieved in reviving the State entities.
Minister Chinamasa said the due diligence exercise would begin with strategic companies. Parastatals used to contribute about 40 percent to the gross domestic product.
“It is on the basis of those due diligence reports that we would be able to carry out any reform measures,” said Minister Chinamasa.
In the 2015 Budget Statement, Minister Chinamasa highlighted the need for an urgent implementation of public enterprises so that they contribute to the national fiscus.
The $110 million grant, which will be increased to $125 million, will mainly support projects identified in the Zimbabwe Agenda for Sustainable Socio Economic Transformation. About $35,6 million would go towards Kariba Dam rehabilitation.
Minister Chinamasa has allocated $1,1 million in supporting meat and leather industries, “and this funding resonates well with the value addition and beneficiation cluster under the Zim-Asset”.
Some of the money has been allocated for water and sewer rehabilitation in Bulawayo and Marondera.
About $16,9 million will go towards the rehabilitation of Alaska-Karoi electricity transmission line project while $1,9 million will be used in the formulation of the energy sector master plan study.
Minister Chinamasa said the AfDB had shown interest in pursuing improvement of doing business environment in Zimbabwe.
AfDB resident representative Mr Mateus Magala said the regional bank would continue working with the Government in the implementation of infrastructural projects.
He added there was need for a policy shift to attract meaningful foreign capital to fund infrastructural projects.
“The people of Zimbabwe are being supported with additional $110 million from the AFDB,” said Mr Magala.
“This grant and resources can be augmented to about $125 million if not more once additional resources are mobilised from partners and private sector.”
These funds are under the African Development Fund.