By Alois Vinga
PRESIDENT Emmerson Mnangagwa is set to host the second structured dialogue platform with creditors and development partners Thursday to discuss an engagement plan for Zimbabwe’s arrears clearance and debt resolution process.
Also expected to grace the occasion is former President of Mozambique, Joaquim Chissano who will play the facilitation role and lead the dialogue on broad economic and governance issues constraining arrears clearance and debt resolution.
“Since arriving in Zimbabwe earlier this week, Chissano has been consulting with various stakeholders, including development partners, and representatives of the private sector and civil society.
“Luisa Diogo, former Prime Minister of Mozambique, is supporting the facilitator in her role as technical advisor. Championing the process is Dr. Akinwumi Adesina, president of the African Development Bank Group (AfDB), who was invited to play this role by the Zimbabwean president in 2022,” a communiqué published ahead of the meeting revealed.
Adesina and his delegation touched base Wednesday afternoon ahead of the convention. He has since dedicated resources to help the authorities ensure a successful process.
The meeting follows an initial dialogue held in December 2022 involving the government and various stakeholders.
Official records have it that it was agreed at the Inaugural Structured Dialogue Platform meeting that the Strategic Working Groups would feed into the high level Structured Dialogue Platform meetings by producing matrices of reforms to be implemented as key elements of the arrears clearance and debt relief process being championed by AfDB.
According to the Finance Ministry, total external debt as at the end of September 2022 is estimated at US$14,04 billion including US$5,7 billion bilateral debt which is 41% of the total , US$2,6 billion multilateral debt representing 18,4% of the total debt.
The high level engagement comes at a time when monetary authorities back home have managed to ease inflationary pressures, relatively restored the Zim$ stability and confidence amid expectations that if the country manages to unlock international credit lines, a rebound in economic growth may see the light of the day.