ZIM DE­NIES LOOM­ING FOOD SHORT­AGE CRI­SIS

Daily Nation Newspaper - - BUSINESS AND CORPORATE -

JO­HAN­NES­BURG - One of the most im­por­tant find­ings of Rand Mer­chant Bank’s (RMB) sev­enth edi­tion of Where to In­vest in Africa is that the con­ti­nent could find it­self hov­er­ing on the brink of disas­ter if it con­tin­ues to de­pend on its cur­rent eco­nomic fun­da­men­tals and does not usher in eco­nomic di­ver­si­fi­ca­tion.

Where to In­vest in Africa 2018 high­lights those coun­tries that have un­der­stood the need to adapt to the pro­longed slow­down in com­mod­ity prices and slug­gish lev­els of pro­duc­tion growth – and those that haven’t.

The theme for Where to In­vest in Africa 2018 is “Money Talks” and this edi­tion “fol­lows the money” on the African con­ti­nent to eval­u­ate as­pects cru­cial to each coun­try’s eco­nomic per­for­mance.

The re­port fo­cuses on the main sources of dol­lar rev­enues in Africa, which al­lows it to mea­sure the most im­por­tant in­come gen­er­a­tors and iden­tify in­vest­ment op­por­tu­ni­ties.

“Over the past three years, some African gov­ern­ments have had to im­ple­ment deep and painful bud­get cuts, an­nounce mul­ti­ple cur­rency de­val­u­a­tions and adopt hawk­ish mon­e­tary pol­icy stances – all as a re­sult of a sig­nif­i­cant drop in tra­di­tional rev­enues,” says RMB Africa an­a­lyst Ce­leste Fau­con­nier, a co-au­thor of Where to In­vest in Africa 2018.– BUSI­NESS DAY. HARARE – Cap­tains of in­dus­try yes­ter­day slammed so­cial me­dia re­ports sug­gest­ing that the coun­try will soon face ba­sic com­modi­ties’ price in­creases and short­ages.

In sep­a­rate in­ter­views, busi­ness and in­dus­try ex­ec­u­tives con­demned the false re­ports, which dom­i­nated the week­end, and ac­cused per­pe­tra­tors of in­cit­ing pub­lic panic and de­stroy­ing busi­ness con­fi­dence.

“Con­fed­er­a­tion of Zim­babwe In­dus­tries pres­i­dent Sife­lani Ja­bangwe said “the sit­u­a­tion that we are in at the mo­ment is not any­thing close to the past be­cause com­pa­nies are pro­duc­ing although there are chal­lenges.

“The prob­lem that hap­pened last week be­cause of so­cial me­dia re­ports that there are go­ing to be some food short­ages and price in­creases, the pub­lic was sent into a panic mode and with panic buy­ing peo­ple start to buy more than they nor­mally con­sume,” he said.”

Econ­o­mist, Wendy Mpofu said although the econ­omy was ex­pe­ri­enc­ing chal­lenges, eco­nomic in­di­ca­tors did not point to a sit­u­a­tion where the coun­try could have ba­sic com­modi­ties’ short­ages and price hikes.

“De­spite the chal­lenges fac­ing the econ­omy, the eco­nomic cli­mate is bet­ter off than be­fore the lib­er­al­i­sa­tion of the econ­omy in Fe­bru­ary 2009.”

Zim­babwe Na­tional Cham­ber of Com­merce chief ex­ec­u­tive of­fi­cer, Christo­pher Mu­gaga, said the pre­vail­ing spec­u­la­tion would not last.

“It’s un­for­tu­nate the spec­u­la­tors who have hit the forex mar­ket are now spread­ing to the goods mar­ket and this is not a new phe­nom­e­non in Zim­babwe and it’s also very pro­nounced in coun­tries like Sene­gal and Nige­ria.

Con­fed­er­a­tion of Zim­babwe In­dus­tries pres­i­dent Sife­lani Ja­bangwe

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