Expansionist budget needed

via RadioVop Zimbabwe – Expansionist budget needed 01/11/2013  By Sij Ncube

More than 300 ZANU PF and MDC parliamentarians are meeting in the resort town of Victoria Falls for a pre-national budget conference with high expectations the legislators will come up with a plan that should stimulate economic growth. 

There are concerns the country’s economy is slowing down, resulting in the closure and liquidation of several companies in the past year.

Analysts told Radio VOP that the legislators should draw up an expansionist national budget to revitalise the economy which critics say has been stagnant since the termination of the coalition government mid this year.

Expectations are high the budget would take into cognisance Zanu PF election promises, particularly job creation, revival of industries and a full roll-out of economic empowerment policies targeting the poor.

Analysts say the national budget should be seen to be encouraging more investment on social services, water health and education. The legislators should also ensure that the budget factored in measures to address a fall in government revenue as well as formulate policies that would result in direct foreign investment.

There is a general consensus the new budget should be pro poor and seek budgetary support from donors.

Economist John Robertson pointed out that the government is struggling with reduced revenue in taxes as there are few firms that are operating profitable.

“Also the buying power of people is declining as workers are losing jobs. Job creation should be a priority of the 2014 budget,” said Robertson, adding that the government should help the private sector create jobs by creating an investment friendly environment.

But he cautioned that no serious investor would pump money in the country as long as controversy remained over the government’s black economic empowerment law which requires foreigners to surrender 51 percent of their stake to indigenous Zimbabweans and the punitive tax regime.

“It appears the money to start business is always going up because we have an investment unfriendly climate.”

There have been suggestions from other quarters for the government to impose prohibitive import taxes to protect the local manufacturing industries, particularly the clothing and textile sectors which have collapsed due to cheap imports from the Far East.

But Robertson said it would be wrong as local manufacturers were battling operation challenges due to a harsh economic environment.

George Mukamba, an official with the Bulawayo Business Arise, chipped in, saying the budget should prioritise revival of industries.

“The budget should address the re-capitalisation of critical areas particularly in Bulawayo in the manufacturing and agricultural sectors. The 2014 budget should be an implementation strategy for the recently unveiled Zanu PF economic policy,” said Mukamba.

He estimated that the manufacturing sector would need $2 billion while agriculture would need $3 billion.

 

The Zimbabwe Congress of Trade Unions wants a pro-poor budget which recognises that the bulk of workers in the country earn above the poverty datum line estimated at over $500.

 

COMMENTS

WORDPRESS: 7
  • comment-avatar

    China-mass can’t print USA dollars. Mugabeland totally bankrupt. Crank up the fidelity printing press for gonodollars

  • comment-avatar

    This budget is just a bunch of hot air, without any substance. It’s a wish list without an action plan, just like all the others that have come before it.

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      kenneth R nedziwe 8 years ago

      I cant understand this. What makes people think this bunch of thieves is going to deliver now after failing to do it in 33 years? The SADC and AU had given them a good chance to recover and rejuvinate Through GN. They squandered the 4 years.Foerget it, they are in Vic Falls to have a good time with smallhouses .300 of them. Lord hear our prayer. I have not said this before.

  • comment-avatar
    kenneth R nedziwe 8 years ago

    I cant understand this. What makes people think this bunch of thieves is going to deliver now after failing to do it in 33 years? The SADC and AU had given them a good chance to recover and rejuvinate Through GN. They squandered the 4 years.Foerget it, they are in Vic Falls to have a good time with smallhouses .300 of them. Lord hear our prayer.

  • comment-avatar
    kenneth R nedziwe 8 years ago

    I cant understand this. What makes people think this bunch of thieves is going to deliver now after failing to do it in 33 years? The SADC and AU had given them a good chance to recover and rejuvinate Through GN. They squandered the 4 years.Foerget it, they are in Vic Falls to have a good time with smallhouses .300 of them. Lord hear our prayer. I have not said this before.

    • comment-avatar
      BossMyass 8 years ago

      As a result of this economic corruption, we now have a post-colonial new class of mega rich people -the tender-preneurs whose wealth comes from the tenders they win. Similarly, the secret deals that are entered into for the exploitation of minerals such as oil, gold, diamonds, platinum, nickel, uranium, and other precious minerals directly benefit those who control the levers of power and the investors, but very little trickles down to the common person.

      Because Africa requires investment, issues of royalties, how much interest can be repatriated by the investors, beneficiation, reinvestment and environmental degradation are downplayed. And where there are policies for “localization”, “indigenization” or “nationalization”, these are mere clichés and high-sounding words which lack clarity and substance in their implementation.