As government we are aware that there are sectors that capital is needed to get extraction off the ground, and where the local people simply do not have the resources
The Sunday Express
Zimbabwean landowners holding on to vast tracts of unused land would either lose their tenure – or risk losing the claims when renewal came up.
This was said by Zimbabwe’s Minister of Public Service, Labour and Social Welfare Professor Paul Mavima while addressing the Zimbabwe Investors Business Committee (ZIBC) this week.
The ZIBC opened its cards to the public with intent this week – after hosting a highly successful online conference – in which the organisation charted a new direction in its engagements with the Zimbabwe diaspora – and government.
In a frank Q & A with guests, participants, and civic groups this week, Professor Mavima said that government many leases were up for renewal – but government audits had revealed that thousands of hectares of land were lying fallow – and many companies has been given the opportunity to develop land and extraction – but some had not done anything.
“For instance, there are companies that are holding to vast tracts in the Zhombe area, and also in the Shurugwi areas. There are many claims for chrome, gold, and others in platinum base mineral areas.
“But remember that in mining there are many claims that are in dispute, and many counterclaims.
“Also the government is aware that there are some sectors that capital is needed to get extraction off the ground, and where the local people simply do not have the resources.
“That’s where the Chinese investors have come in, but even there were aware that some of the investors are damagi9ng the flora and fauna.
“So that is where the indigenisation policy has been coming in because we simply have to protect the interests of our people first. That is why we are saying – if our diaspora people have got the muscle and resources to invest – come through.
“Look at Unki – 100% of the people working there – are Zimbabweans.
“So there are massive opportunities in mining – but also in construction, in agriculture.
“Before people from other countries come in, we are saying that the indigenisation policy must benefit those with skills and expertise to do what you are doing to build foreign countries, and also build your own home country,” said Prof Mavima.
As reported in The Sunday Express this week – the ZIBC is a non-political organisation focused on encouraging Zimbabweans in the diaspora to invest back home by working with the government to ensure compliance and good governance of investor interests into Zimbabwe.
Co-host and Sunday Express correspondent Addlyne Mackenzie said that the ZIBC dialogues series was targeted and driving investment into all sectors of Zimbabwean industry including mining, medical, education, infrastructure, agriculture, tourism, civil and engineering.
The organisation was set up as an initiative in 2021 calling for Zimbabweans in the diaspora, and in Zimbabwe to harness the skills and resources to develop businesses and Zimbabwe as well as invest in the country.
ZIBC also has a view of insuring that the diaspora community and Zimbabwe-based businesses and stakeholders are constantly engaged to build and maintain a healthy economic relationship between Zimbabwe and the diaspora.
It has the following strategic objectives:
1. Our objective is to encourage investment, business partnership, enterprise, and the creation of sustainable jobs in Zimbabwe
2. Promote capacity building and enhance diaspora-homeland relationship for benefit of both parties
3. Provide the legal instrument to extend some rights and privileges enjoyed in Zimbabwe to Zimbabweans
in the Diaspora
4. Mobilise resources for sustainable development; and
5. Facilitate the collection and dissemination of accurate and relevant data for sustainable engagement
with the diaspora.
6. Create an equity holding investment venture, which would invest in strategic vetted infrastructure
Dr Ian Henney is leader of ZIBC and is a well-recognised and respected businessman and educationist. He is the Founder and Executive Chairman of Borrowdale Brooke Academy Group.
A passionate philanthropist he also runs the Ian Henney Foundation which helps underprivileged children with scholarships and support. He is also the Special Envoy for Education, Tolerance & Cultures in Zimbabwe.
He is a holder of BSc and Masters in Business Administration and a PHD in Administration.
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