Govt to pri­va­tise 11 paras­tatals

Chronicle (Zimbabwe) - - Front Page - Busi­ness Re­porter

AT least 11 State-owned en­ter­prises will be pri­va­tised un­der the Government’s pub­lic en­ter­prises re­form frame­work for 2018-2020 while some will be liq­ui­dated, merged or de­part­men­talised.

The mea­sures are con­tained in the new Government blue-print, the Tran­si­tional Sta­bil­i­sa­tion Pro­gramme (TSP) that was pre­sented by Fi­nance and Eco­nomic De­vel­op­ment Min­is­ter, Pro­fes­sor Mthuli Ncube, on Fri­day. The Min­is­ter said re­form­ing the State-owned en­ter­prise sec­tor was part of the short to medium term re­form frame­work whose im­ple­men­ta­tion is al­ready un­der­way.

“Government will ex­pe­dite the im­ple­men­ta­tion of the Cabi­net de­ci­sion on restructuring, par­tial or full pri­vati­sa­tion of en­ti­ties. The re­form mea­sures for im­me­di­ate im­ple­men­ta­tion over the pe­riod 2018-2020 tar­get the pri­vati­sa­tion of 11 State-owned en­ter­prises, six IDC sub­sidiaries, and 17 ZMDC sub­sidiaries,” said Prof Ncube.

With­out pro­vid­ing names, he said two Sta­te­owned en­ter­prises and three IDC sub­sidiaries will be liq­ui­dated while 11 en­ti­ties will be merged and seven de­part­men­talised into line min­istries. The min­is­ter also an­nounced a dis­so­lu­tion of all sub­sidiary boards for Zesa Hold­ings. Go­ing for­ward, he said, the Zim­babwe Power Com­pany would be al­lowed to en­gage strate­gic part­ners for its power gen­er­a­tion projects.

Other mea­sures in­clude de-merg­ing the Grain Mar­ket­ing Board (GMB) into a com­mer­cial busi­ness unit and the Strate­gic Grain Re­serve, pro­mul­ga­tion of the Civil Avi­a­tion Amend­ment Bill to pro­vide for the un­bundling of the author­ity into a reg­u­la­tor and an air­ports author­ity.

Min­is­ter Ncube said the re­form frame­work was aimed at gain­ing quick wins from paras­tatals in line with long-stand­ing ob­jec­tives of bring­ing or­der­li­ness in their oper­a­tions, restor­ing dis­ci­pline and ra­tio­nal­ity, turn­ing around their per­for­mances and im­prov­ing on gen­eral ser­vice-de­liv­ery to con­trib­ute to­wards re­vival of Zim­babwe’s eco­nomic for­tunes.

The tough de­ci­sions come on the back of re­ports that 70 per­cent of State-owned en­ter­prises are tech­ni­cally in­sol­vent af­ter most of them in­curred a com­bined $270 mil­lion losses, ac­cord­ing to the Au­di­tor Gen­eral’s 2017 re­port.

Pro­fes­sor Ncube, how­ever, said an in­sti­tu­tional sup­port for paras­tatal re­form frame­work was be­ing put in place to en­sure de­serv­ing en­ti­ties get fund­ing un­der the $3,2 mil­lion grant from the African De­vel­op­ment Bank.

He said the per­for­mance re­views will as­sess in de­tail the con­cerned State-owned en­ter­prises’ gov­er­nance sys­tem, fi­nan­cial, op­er­a­tional, le­gal en­vi­ron­ment, pro­cesses and pro­ce­dures af­fect­ing them.

These en­ti­ties in­clude Agrib­ank, Al­lied Tim­bers, SMEDCO, Zi­nara, SIRDC, and IDBZ. Min­is­ter Ncube said the Euro­pean Union has also availed fund­ing for the per­for­mance re­view of an ad­di­tional three state-owned en­ter­prises un­der the nat­u­ral re­source pro­gramme. These in­clude the Forestry Com­mis­sion, the Zim­babwe Parks and Wildlife Author­ity and the En­vi­ron­men­tal Man­age­ment Agency (EMA). Government has iden­ti­fied a fur­ther set for the per­for­mance re­views, namely CMED, ARDA, Print­flow and Nat­pharm.

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