via Korean business delegation meets Govt officials | The Herald October 16, 2015
A SOUTH Korean business delegation consisting of both public and private sector players is in the country to seek investment opportunities in the areas of power generation and road construction.
The delegation made up of representatives from conglomerates Samsung Construction and Trade, DAEWOO International, Hyundai Corporation, and parastatals including the Korean Trade Agency (KOTRA) and Korea Electric Power,yesterday met up with several Government officials and representatives from the Zimbabwe Investment Authority, Zimbabwe Energy Regulatory Authority, Zimbabwe Power Company and several local private firms.
Speaking on the sidelines of the meeting, Embassy of the Republic of Korea deputy chief of mission Mr Kang Won-joon said the delegation may consider trade, but their top priority was infrastructure rehabilitation.
“They are coming to explore the possibility of investment.
“The main purpose of the delegation is to seek out opportunities in power generation, road construction and maybe trade.
“These are the major areas that are interested in investing in Zimbabwe. The companies that have come include Hyundai Corporation, Samsung Construction and Trade and DAEWOO International, and these are three of the major Korean conglomerates.
“There are also representatives from two parastatals, namely Korean Trade Agency and Korea Electric Power,” he said.
Officially opening the business meeting, the Minister of Macro-economic Planning and Investment Promotion Obert Mpofu said the country offered investors significant investment opportunities with regard to infrastructure rehabilitation.
“With the power challenges currently being experienced in the country, we would gladly welcome investment into the energy sector.
“The country has the primary resources required for power generation in the abundant availability of water bodies, energy minerals such as coal and methane and 300 days of sunshine which can adequately provide solar power,” said Minister Mpofu.
According to data provided by the Zimbabwe Energy Regulatory Authority at the meeting, the country has 12 billion metric tons proven resources in coal, 5 000 megawatts of potential hydro-power generation along the Zambezi River and 40 cubic feet of coal bed methane, highlighting the vast investment opportunities latent in the energy sector.
Added Minister Mpofu: “Due to debilitating economic challenges experienced over the past decade there has not been any new investment in infrastructure development, particularly in power generation, water, transport including road and rail. To this end, the Government has commissioned numerous infrastructural projects to anchor economic and social development but these are not enough as sustainable economic growth can only be achieved through a robust, reliable and cost-effective infrastructure network.
“Zimbabwe’s connectivity and vantage point as the gateway to Southern Africa makes it an ideal base from which Korean companies can expand their presence in the region.”
Zimbabwe and Korea have historically maintained cordial co-operative ties since the establishment of diplomatic ties in 1994. And earlier in May, telecoms manufacturing giant Samsung — an affiliate of Samsung Construction and Trade — signed a $10 million deal with a local firm, Cranbal Investments that will see the Korean giant setting up a television and refrigerator assembly plant in Zimbabwe.