AfDB pledges further support for Zim energy and infrastructural projects

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By Reason Razao

African Development Bank (AfDB) has reassured its firm support to fund government and private sector’s infrastructure and energy development projects in the country.

Speaking after a crunch meeting Friday with Finance and Economic Development Minister, Mthuli Ncube and other government officials, AfDB’s vice-presidents for Private Sector, Infrastructure and Industrialisation as well as Power, Energy, Climate and Green Growth, Solomon Quaynor and Kevin Kariuki, respectively, pledged to help Zimbabwe’s infrastructural programmes.

“My key area has been to give a lot of fact finding on what we can do as an institution to support the private sector’s development in Zimbabwe in a deeper sense and we spent time meeting with several private sector entities,” Quaynor said.

“We have had a chance to meet with the government to really understand the enabling environment that the government is creating. We are quite excited to really continue to deepen our work here in terms of private sector investments as well as infrastructure investments, which is important to catalysing private sector investments,” he added.

AfDB’s vice-president, Power, Energy, Climate and Green Growth said the bank was excited to support government and the private players in creating a vibrant power sector.

“My main purpose of being here was to reiterate AfDB’s support to the power sector in Zimbabwe specifically with regard to the Batoka Gorge Hydro Power project, and secondly to support the country in energy transition,” Kariuki said.

Ncube weighed in saying the support would enable Zimbabwe explore various opportunities.

“The visit was aimed at reflecting on the support that the bank is extending and providing to the country, but also explored various opportunities where the banks could give Zimbabwe further support in the energy sector, and also in dealing with our arrears sector in terms of dealing with debt management,” said Ncube.

Also present were Minister of Energy, Soda Zhemu, Transport deputy minister Mike Madiro, Agriculture deputy minister Vangelis Haritatos, Permanent Secretary for Industry and Commerce Mavis Sibanda, as well as representative from the Treasury’s debt office.