Monday, July 22, 2013

Zanu-PF's US$2 trillion agenda
Sunday, 07 July 2013 00:00
Makomborero Mutimukulu

Senior candidates . . . Zanu-PF President and First Secretary Cde Mugabe congratulates Vice-President Mujuru, who is also the National Assembly candidate for Mt Darwin West, as the party’s representatives in the July 31 poll are introduced at the election manifesto launch in Highfield, Harare, last Friday. Next to the President is First Lady Amai Grace Mugabe and Zanu-PF national chairman Cde Simon-Khaya Moyo (partly obscured) — Picture by Kudakwashe Hunda

Zanu-PF plans to step up the Indigenisation and Economic Empowerment Programme through a robust cocktail of measures aimed at unlocking nearly US$2 trillion in the country’s economy as well as improving the lives of millions of Zimbabweans.

The party also has its eyes firmly set on creating millions of dignified jobs and continuing its massive investment in education, agriculture and housing.

In its well-articulated election manifesto — dubbed the People’s Manifesto which was launched before a massive crowd at the historic Zimbabwe Grounds in Highfield, Harare, on Friday — Zanu-PF discloses that it plans to channel the money generated from the unlocking of value in key sectors of the economy into institutions such as the Infrastructure Development Bank of Zimbabwe, Agribank and the Small Enterprises Development Corporation, among others.

Conservative estimates are that these key institutions have the capacity to sweat the money realised from unlocking value in the mining sector, parastatals and local authorities four-fold through investments in both the local and international markets.

This means that the country is currently sitting on idle assets that have the potential to generate a massive US$8 trillion.
Zanu-PF President and First Secretary Cde Mugabe points out that the revitalised empowerment drive, which his party will roll out as soon as it wins the July 31 elections, will be transparent, accountable and tangible.

In his foreword in the party’s manifesto, President Mugabe, who is also the Head of State and Government and Commander-in-Chief of the Zimbabwe Defence Forces, reiterates that “Team Zanu-PF” is ready to further improve the lives of Zimbabweans following the successful implementation of the irreversible and historic land reform programme.

“The essence of Zanu-PF’s ideology is to economically empower the indigenous people of Zimbabwe by enabling them to fully own their country’s God-given natural resources and the means of production to unlock or create value from those resources,” he says.

“Notably, our achievements have been blighted since 1999 by the twin evils of regime change and the illegal economic sanctions. And the last five years of the awkward GPA government have exerted the greatest toll on the people’s aspirations.

“Our people’s manifesto provides the ways and means out of the quagmire created by the above (mentioned) obstacles to enable us to work together as Team Zanu-PF to put our national development back on its revolutionary path.”

President Mugabe adds that apart from giving indigenous Zimbabweans a chance to own controlling equity in hitherto foreign-owned companies, the indigenisation and empowerment drive is also aimed at facilitating their entry into key sectors of the economy such as mining, tourism and agriculture.

“This policy will create dignified employment for the youth, distribute wealth amongst citizens more equitably, cause a general improvement in the quality of life of every Zimbabwean and bring about sustainable national development which is home grown.

“In response to widespread concerns and expectations that ordinary people should be the beneficiaries of the policy of Indigenisation and Economic Empowerment, the next Zanu-PF Government will put in place robust measures to ensure an even more transparent, accountable, tangible and measurable implementation matrix in the national interest.

“It is therefore the national duty of each and every one of us — young or old — to go out in our historic numbers to vote for Zanu-PF in the forthcoming elections,” says President Mugabe.

In its manifesto, Zanu-PF notes the tremendous strides made in empowering Zimbabweans through the indigenisation of foreign-owned companies. However, the revolutionary party recognises that there is a limit to the value that can be unlocked using this modus operandi.

“This is because the foreign companies in question, especially in the mining sector for example, are limited in number and also because the indigenous equity in the companies is 51 percent,” explains the party.

Zanu-PF points out that real value will be unlocked by giving Zimbabweans access to their God-given resources.

“The value to be unlocked from our God-given natural and economic resources has not been previously indicated or clarified yet it presents the greatest opportunities for total or 100 percent of the indigenous populations,” reads the manifesto.

The party adds that it will seek to unlock value from three main assets if it gets the mandate to govern for the next five years. The first source of these assets is defined by the country’s unexploited but “measured” mineral reserves whose economic or mining viability has been technically determined to be over US$1,8 trillion.

The other two sources are parastatals and local authorities, which are estimated to have a combined idle asset base of nearly US$9 billion.
Zanu-PF notes that there is scope to work the money realised from unlocking value from these three sources for the benefit of the nation.

“The total of these idle assets is US$1 853 261 245 908,” says the revolutionary party.

“The value that can be unlocked in the local and international markets from this amount is four-fold the nominal amount if the assets are given to public banks such as IDBZ, Agribank, Sovereign Wealth Fund or Sedco.”

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