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ZimAsset: An empowered and growing economy
07/11/2013 00:00:00
by
 
 
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This is the second part of NewZimbabwe.com's serialisation of the government’s new economic blueprint ZimAsset.

Towards an Empowered Society and a Growing Economy:

October 2013 - December 2018

By coming up with Zim Asset, Government seeks to address ona sustainable basis, the numerous challenges affecting qualityservice delivery and economic growth. The Plan is expected toconsolidate the gains brought about by the Land Reform,Indigenisation and Economic Empowerment and EmploymentCreation Programmes, which have empowered the communitiesthrough Land Redistribution, Community Share OwnershipTrusts and Employee Share Ownership Schemes, among others.
The interventions identified for implementation in this Plan aremainly informed by the ZANU PF Central Committee Report tothe 13th National Peoples Conference of 2012 which gave birthto the ZANU PF Manifesto, His Excellency the President’sspeeches at the occasion of his inauguration and the OfficialOpening of the First Session of the 8th Parliament of Zimbabwe,National Development Priorities and the UN MillenniumDevelopment Goals (MDGs) as well as the new Constitution.

During the plan period, the economy is projected to grow by anaverage of 7.3%. It is expected to grow by 3.4% in 2013 and6.2% in 2014 and continue on an upward growth trajectory to9.9% by 2018. These growth projections are anchored on the successful
implementation of Zim Asset.

Overall Assumptions of the Zim Asset Plan

The following broad assumptions will anchor thegrowth of the economy during the period 2013 –2018:
  • Improved liquidity and access to credit by key sectorsof the economy such as agriculture;
  • Establishment of a Sovereign Wealth Fund;
  • Improved revenue collection from key sectors of the economy such as mining;
  • Increased investment in infrastructure such as energy and power development, roads, rail, aviation, telecommunication, water and sanitation, through acceleration in the implementation of Public Private Partnerships (PPPs) and other private sector driven initiatives;
  • Increased Foreign Direct Investment (FDI);
  • Establishment of Special Economic Zones;
  • Continued use of the multi-currency system;
  • Effective implementation of Value Addition policies and strategies;
  • Improved electricity and water supply.
Key Drivers for Projected Growth Targets.

The key drivers for this growth and employment creation will be accelerated development through value addition processes in the:



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  • Mining sector;
  • Agriculture sector;
  • Infrastructural sectors primarily focusing on power
  • generation;
  • Transport sector;
  • Tourism sector;
  • ICT sector and
  • Enhanced support for the SMEs and Co-operatives sector.

In addition to the aforementioned, Peace, Security and Defence are also key drivers in ensuring a conducive environment for macro-economic growth as these are important in protecting the country’s socio-political environment, sovereignty and territorial integrity.

Key Success Factors
The implementation of this Plan will rely on the following Key Success Factors (KSFs):
  • Political commitment and leadership from the highest level.
  • Strong collaborative partnerships among Government agencies, the private sector, citizens and other stakeholders;
  • Human capital development programmes to enhance the acquisition of requisite skills;
  • Scientific research and development;
  • Continued use of the multi-currency regime to consolidate macroeconomic stabilization;
  • Introduction of Special Economic Zones;
  • Creation of special funding vehicles such as acceleration of the implementation of PPPs;
  • Establishment of the Sovereign Wealth Fund;
  • Institutionalization of RBM across the public sector (civil service, parastatals, state enterprises and local authorities);
  • Value addition and beneficiation in productive sectors such as mining, agriculture and manufacturing;
  • Rehabilitation, upgrading and development of key infrastructure and utilities comprising power generation, roads, rail, aviation and water;
  • Deliberate implementation of supportive policies in key productive economic sectors such as agriculture, mining, manufacturing and tourism in order to quickly grow the economy;
  • Alignment of legislation, policies and guidelines by all Government ministries and departments in line with Constitution Amendment (No 20) Act 2013.
Strategic Direction

In implementing this Plan, Government envisions the growing of a robust economy that is highly competitive in the region and the rest of Africa, as well as the building of an empowered society that owns the means of production.

The Vision of the Plan is “Towards an Empowered Society and a Growing Economy”.The execution of this Plan will be guided by the following Mission: “To provide an enabling environment for sustainable economic empowerment and social transformation to the people of Zimbabwe”.

Key Strategies

The Plan seeks to boost economic growth and development and will be guided by the following strategies that are aligned to cluster priorities:

  • Investing in sustainable and robust solutions in order to address the challenges of food insecurity and undernourishment;
  • Implementing the Presidential Agricultural Input Support Scheme;
  • Providing social services encompassing construction of housing, schools, hospitals and other social amenities particularly in the new resettlement areas;
  • Availing and increasing economic opportunities for women, youths and the physically challenged in communities in conformity with the Indigenisation, Empowerment and Employment Creation thrust;
  • Expanding the accessibility and utilisation of ICTs to improve service delivery and accelerate economic growth;
  • Building and rehabilitating infrastructure and utilities as enablers for economic growth and prosperity;
  • Establishing Special Economic Zones;
  • Improving production and export of goods and servicesthrough value addition and beneficiation;
  • Implementing an Import Substitution programme(particularly to address machinery, equipment, fuels,chemicals and consumer products);
  • Fostering strategic linkages and formalization among SMEsand Co-operatives across all sectors of the economy;
  • Recapitalising and capacitating the Industrial Development Corporation (IDC), Infrastructural Development Bank of Zimbabwe (IDBZ), AgriBank, Small Enterprise DevelopmentCorporation (SEDCO), the Minerals Exploration Company,Zimbabwe Mining Development Corporation (ZMDC) andthe Minerals Marketing Corporation of Zimbabwe (MMCZ)to grow the economy and create employment;
  • Re-inventing the business of Government through the Integrated Results Based Management (IRBM) System;
  • Accelerating the implementation of Public Private Partnerships (PPPs) to fund economic revival and infrastructure development.

Being cognisant of the fact that Government will continue to experience fiscal space challenges going into the near future, there is great need to optimize utilisation of the scarce revenue streams that flow into the fiscus. This Plan, as reiterated, will be greatly guided by the Results Based Management System and Results Based Budgeting (RBB) which emphasises achievement of tangible and high quality results from limited resources.

Additionally, the Plan seeks to address systemic institutional weaknesses by allowing the full exploitation of benefits arising from horizontal and vertical linkages, hence fostering the spirit of collaboration and partnerships among Government Agencies.

To ensure food and nutrition security, Government will continue to defend the gains of the country’s hard-won Independence by making sure that the agricultural sector remains the beacon of the economy. The Government will re-establish financial support for agriculture so that farmers will increase production, productivity and product quality.

In order to stimulate agricultural productivity and safeguard food security, Government will recapitalize and capacitate AgriBank and the Grain Marketing Board (GMB), the Agricultural
Marketing Authority (AMA) and the Agricultural Rural Development Authority (ARDA).

While the Plan will ensure that the Presidential Input Support Scheme focuses on supporting the vulnerable groups at household and community level, it will also ensure that other farmers timeously access affordable inputs. Policies will also be put in place to promote contract farming initiatives. The anticipated growth within the Agricultural Sector will be underpinned by the following sectoral assumptions:

  • Improved agricultural infrastructure to mitigate against drought through rehabilitation and expansion of irrigation projects and increased construction of dams;
  • Timeous availability of inputs on the market at affordable prices;
  • Continued use of the multiple currency system;
  • Agriculture being taken as a priority sector by Government including addressing funding issues;
  • Increased own farmer financing;
  • Strengthened and capacitated key institutions such asAgribank, Agricultural Marketing Authority, AgriculturaRural Development Authority and Grain Marketing Board.
  • Increased contract farming arrangements (tobacco and cotton);
  • Cancellation of the US$80 million electricity owed to ZESA by farmers; and
  • Full operationalization of the Chisumbanje – Middle Sabi Sugarcane Project to boost sugar cane production.

In the social services and poverty eradication sphere, Zim Asset will ride on the opportunities of the Indigenisation and Economic Empowerment Programme for the funding of public utilities in the communities such as schools, hospitals, housing and other social amenities with the intention of creating employment for the youth and women thereby improving the standards of living of the populace. Government will continue to improve the quality of education from Early Childhood Development (ECD) to vocational and tertiary levels to enhance literacy levels and skills development.

A robust infrastructure network and system plays a fundamental role in the socio-economic development of Zimbabwe. To this end, Government will rehabilitate, upgrade and develop the national power grid, road and railway network, water storage, supply and sanitation, buildings as well as ICT related infrastructure. Accordingly, the Infrastructural Development Bank of Zimbabwe (IDBZ) will need to be re-capacitated to enable it to strategically fulfil its mandate in infrastructural development.

In the Energy Sector the Plan will in addition prioritise attainment of optimal generation of power, the production and use of bio-fuels as enablers for economic productivity and growth. The following assumptions will underpin the optimal generation and use of energy in the economy:

  • Raising the installed generation capacity of existing power stations to their optimum;
  • Expansion of existing power stations such as Hwange and Kariba;
  • Completion of new big and mini-hydro-power projects such as Batoka and Gairezi respectively;
  • Resuscitating small thermal power stations of Harare, Bulawayo and Munyati to full power generation capacity;
  • Full utilization of alternative forms of energy such as Coal Bed Methane Gas; and
  • Deliberate development of solar and wind energy initiatives.

One of the focus areas of the Plan is to ensure that all primary commodities across sectors create more value through processing and beneficiation. Given the country’s abundant mineral resource base, Government foresees this sector contributing immensely towards GDP growth. This will be achieved by establishing indigenous mining syndicates, consortia, SMEs and Co-operatives, hence resonating well with the Government’s thrust of indigenization, empowerment and employment creation.

In view of the foregoing, national institutions such as the Mineral Exploration Company, Zimbabwe Mining Development Corporation (ZMDC) and the Minerals Marketing Corporation of Zimbabwe (MMCZ), will play a pivotal role in management of the minerals value chain system in terms of creating a conducive environment for minerals exploitation, value addition and marketing. The continued growth of the mining sector will be underpinned by the following assumptions:

  • Recovery in international commodity prices;
  • Improved electricity and water supply;
  • Strengthening and capacitating the key mining institutions of Minerals Exploration Company, ZMDC and MMCZ;
  • Improved liquidity conditions resulting in availability of finance for the sector; and
  • Increased support to the SMEs and Cooperatives in the mining sector.

In the manufacturing sector, Government is totally committed to resuscitating distressed and closed companies with a view to increasing capacity utilization to optimum levels, generating employment and substituting imports as well as building a sustainable basis for export led growth. In this regard, the Industrial Development Corporation (IDC) will be recapitalized and its operations refocused as one of the key investment vehicles to assist ailing industries. The resuscitation and growth of the manufacturing sector will be premised on the following conditions:

  • Resumption of operations at New ZimSteel (formallyZISCO-Steel);
  • Establishment of new iron and steel companies;
  • Improved electricity and water supply;
  • iv. Strengthening and capacitating key institutions such asIDC, IDBZ and other financial institutions, and
  • Resuscitation and recapitalisation of the local industry.

In the wake of the successful co-hosting of the 20th Session of the UNWTO General Assembly by Zimbabwe and Zambia, the tourism sector has proven to be a major economic pillar currently contributing 10% of the Gross Domestic Product. The contribution is expected to increase to 15% by 2015.

Furthermore, this key economic driver will be supported by implementing a National Tourism Policy, continued improvement of the country’s image and aggressive marketing efforts. Key institutions in this sector such as the Zimbabwe Tourism Authority (ZTA) and the National Conventions Bureau (NCB) will play a paramount role in ensuring the sustainable contribution of the tourism sector to the GDP of the country.

The successful implementation of the Zim Asset Plan will be anchored on sustainable economic empowerment and employment creation programmes for the citizenry. The main thrust of the SMEs and Co-operatives policy will be on creating and growing opportunities for business, skills development and provision of funding for indigenous business ventures especially start-ups and those run by previously disadvantaged individuals.

In order to achieve financial inclusion of innovative youth and women in the formal sector, SEDCO will be recapitalized to finance the development of these projects. In pursuance of the aforementioned sustainable developmental thrust, Government will continue with the “Look East” Policy to unlock the inflow of potential investment into the country.

Implementation Structure

The Office of the President and Cabinet (OPC) will have an oversight, co-ordinative and policy guidance role in the implementation of the Plan which will be carried out by
Government Ministries and Agencies categorised into four clusters as follows:

  • Food Security and Nutrition;
  • Social Services and Poverty Eradication;
  • Infrastructure and Utilities;
  • Value Addition and Beneficiation.

In an effort to engender team spirit in the operations of Government, Ministries and Government Agencies have been put into clusters which relate to the Cabinet Committee system. The clusters are called upon to eliminate compartmentalization and the silo mentality by creating strong synergistic relationships that fully exploit the benefits of both horizontal and vertical linkages as a way of institutionalising harmonised approaches to Government programming.

Monitoring and Evaluation

The Government in pursuit of this Plan, will take a deliberateposition of reforming and harmonising existing laws and otherpieces of legislation in order to strengthen existing structuresand systems to create an enabling environment for qualityservice delivery.

To this end, the Office of the President and Cabinet as theLead Government Agency will provide the necessary leadershipand guidance in the formulation, implementation, monitoringand evaluation of the Plan. It will be critical for the Plan’sMonitoring and Evaluation system to regularly input into theCabinet decision making process in order to achieve tangibleresults on the ground.
 
Funding and Debt Management
 
The Government will mobilise funding from domestic resources, which are in abundance and readily available for full exploitation and utilisation. The creation of a Sovereign Wealth Fund will be given priority under this Plan to backstop and provide predictability and sustainability to Government innovative funding. Additionally, Government will continue to collaborate with all the development partners that have been rendering technical and financial assistance to different sectors of the economy, as well as pursuing investment vehicles such as Public Private Partnerships (PPPs), particularly in the proposed Special Economic Zones.

Going forward, Government will also undertake a number of fiscal reform measures in order to improve fiscal policy management and financial sector stability. There will also be need to accelerate the progress which the country has registered in the re-engagement process with the International Financial Institutions (IFIs) and creditors. This will be done through the policy thrusts that Government has finalized with these institutions under the auspices of the Cabinet approved Zimbabwe Accelerated Arrears Clearance, Debt and Development Strategy (ZAADS) and the Zimbabwe Accelerated Re-engagement Economic Programme (ZAREP).

The Results Matrices

In order to realise tangible results on this Plan, Results Matriceshave been developed for each cluster highlighting majorCluster Key Results Areas (KRAs), Outcomes, Outputs,Strategies and the Lead Institution that will be spearheadingthe implementation of this Plan. During implementation, eachcluster will be required to develop a comprehensiveimplementation matrix which will incorporate other criticaltargets, which have not been captured in the document. Thecluster implementation matrices will form the basis for regularmonitoring as well as periodic review and evaluation.

Food Security and Nutrition Cluster

The thrust of the Food Security and Nutrition Cluster is tocreate a self- sufficient and food surplus economy and seeZimbabwe re-emerge as the “Bread Basket of Southern
Africa”. Ultimately, it seeks to build a prosperous, diverse and competitive food security and nutrition sector that contributes significantly to national development through the provision of an enabling environment for sustainable economic empowerment and social transformation.

The cluster programmes are aligned to and informed by the Comprehensive African Agricultural Development Programme (CAADP), Draft Comprehensive Agriculture Policy Framework (2012-2032), the Food and Nutrition Security Policy, the Zimbabwe Agriculture Investment Plan (2013-2017), SADC and COMESA Food and Nutrition Frameworks.


 
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