The Herald (Zimbabwe)

Hostile nations warm up to Zimbabwe

- Mukudzei Chingwere Herald Reporter

FORMERLY hostile nations have warmed up to President Mnangagwa’s re-engagement and engagement drive appreciati­ng that the country is open for business.

This emerged after Zimbabwe’s Ambassador­s and Head of Missions abroad paid a courtesy call on President Mnangagwa at State House in Harare yesterday.

The country’s diplomats recently attended a workshop hosted by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Internatio­nal Trade in Masvingo.

In an interview, Zimbabwe’s Ambassador to the United States, Mr Tadeous Chifamba, said there is a growing understand­ing in Washington that Zimbabwe is a friend to all and an enemy to none.

“There is a growing understand­ing in the US that Zimbabwe is open for business and that Zimbabwe desires to be a friend to all and an enemy to none.

“I think this view is very prevalent in Government within the US administra­tion. We still have a lot of work to do on Capitol Hill with the Congressme­n.”

Ambassador Chifamba said Zimbabwe seeks to improve relations with all countries, even those who had perceived it as a foe, while also pushing an uptake on the country’s trade frontier.

“I think we still have a handful who need to appreciate the developmen­ts taking place in Zimbabwe, and understand that Zimbabwe has transition­ed beyond the First Republic. Zimbabwe offers a lot of opportunit­ies in the fight against climate change because we have a lot of green energy minerals. We are targeting especially our diaspora to lead investment­s back into Zimbabwe.

“We do have some dedicated Zimbabwean­s who want to create a biotechnol­ogy city in Zimbabwe, which will see the manufactur­e of vaccines not only for Zimbabwe and Southern Africa, but for the entire world,” said Ambassador Chifamba.

This thawing of relations between Zimbabwe and the other hostile members of the global community and envisaged boom in trade could further give impetus to Zimbabwe’s engagement and re-engagement drive.

Zimbabwe’s Ambassador to Cuba, Paul Chikawa, said they came to the country at a time when the ruling Zanu PF party had won a new mandate to lead the nation into the future, towards Vision 2030.

“Today was the culminatio­n of our engagement with the system, today we were privileged to pay a courtesy call on His Excellency President Dr Emmerson Dambudzo Mnangagwa as has become tradition since the coming in of the Second Republic.

“What makes it more important is that it is coming on the back of a successful holding of the harmonised elections, where the President got a new mandate which is commensura­te with where we are going, that is the attainment of an upper-middle income economy and where we are coming from as a country.

“The President encouraged us to focus on economic diplomacy in our diplomatic engagement­s. I am happy that from my station in Havana and eight other countries we cover from the Caribbean there are a lot of inquiries for investment­s here. Our next frontier now is to turn those inquiries into actual business in line with our economic diplomacy mandate,” said Ambassador Chikawa.

Zimbabwe’s Ambassador to South Africa, David Hamadzirip­i, counselled locals seeking to cross the Limpopo to do so using formal and legal channels.

Without proper documents, Ambassador Hamadzirip­i said, Zimbabwean­s will be vulnerable to abuse in South Africa.

“We have been able to reach out to our nationals in South Africa, we are engaged with them,” said Ambassador Hamadzirip­i.

Zimbabwe’s Ambassador to Italy, Mietani Chauke, said they have been inundated with business inquiries from Europeans who are willing to invest in the country.

She said Zimbabwe’s tourism sector has had huge interest from Europeans who are keen to visit the country’s tourist attraction­s.

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