Zim­babwe’s first post-Mu­gabe bud­get lim­its lo­cal own­er­ship re­quire­ment

Zambian Business Times - - POLITICS AND GOVERNMENTS -

ON Thurs­day 07 De­cem­ber, Zim­babwe’s new govern­ment pledged to re-en­gage with in­ter­na­tional lenders, curb spend­ing and at­tract in­vestors to re­vive its bat­tered econ­omy.

In the first bud­get since last month’s re­moval of long-time ruler Robert Mu­gabe, Fi­nance Min­is­ter Pa­trick Chi­na­masa also said the govern­ment would amend in­di­geni­sa­tion laws, lim­it­ing a 51% lo­cal own­er­ship re­quire­ment to just the plat­inum and di­a­mond sec­tors.

The laws were de­signed to in­crease black Zimbabweans’ share of the econ­omy, but were opaque and open to abuse — to the detri­ment of for­eign in­vestor con­fi­dence.

"As we fo­cus on re­cov­ery of our econ­omy, we must shed mis­be­haviours and acts of in­dis­ci­pline which have char­ac­terised the past," Chi­na­masa told par­lia­ment.

To cut a bud­get deficit pro­jected at more than 10% of GDP this year, he said the govern­ment would re­tire all civil ser­vants aged over 65 and close some over­seas diplo­matic mis­sions.

Govern­ment spend­ing bal­looned un­der Mu­gabe — part of the pa­tron­age ma­chine that kept him in power for 37 years — with more than 90% of the bud­get go­ing on civil ser­vant salaries, leav­ing pre­cious lit­tle for the in­vest­ment needed to boost growth.

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