By Robert Tapfumaneyi
INFORMATION Minister Monica Mutsvangwa says the country’s economy was on the rebound basing this on what she said were the successes of government’s Transitional Stabilisation Programme (TSP) introduced by Finance Minister Mthuli Ncube 2018.
TSP comes to and end at the end of this month and is to be succeeded by the National Development Strategy (NDS1).
According to authorities, TSP stabilised the exchange rate and brought budget surpluses as opposed to deficits previously experienced.
It also whittled down the public wage bill from 68,9 percent of total expenditure in 2017 to 50 percent in 2020.
Addressing journalists in Gweru Monday, Mutsvangwa had time to boast about the achievements of the government policy slant.
“Where in at some point, prophets of doom and our detractors were predicting an economic meltdown of great proportions, the TSP which invested in development enabling infrastructural sectors such as roads, energy and ICT,” she said.
“Buttressed by a raft of measures including deliberately working on budget rationalisation, introduction of the Forex Auction System and an assortment of financial sector reforms, the country has stabilised the economy by arresting the hitherto runaway inflation, stabilised prices and brought the much-needed macroeconomic stability.
“The successes of the TSP will be unpacked to you in greater detail in this workshop. Unfortunately, as the media, we did not do justice to amplify this fact.
“It is thus my fervent hope that this workshop which brings the best minds in the industry together, will come up with solid strategies that will see the information sector unpacking these achievements to make a strong case for the scheduled Development Strategies.”
Mutsvangwa said it is her conviction that if the nation is to meaningfully and viably realise its developmental aspirations as “enunciated in the National Development Strategy, citizens, families, the corporate sector, local authorities, government departments, other countries that do business with as well as investors from within and abroad need to understand the course we have chart out in the NDS1”.
“People need information to understand what NDS is all about so they can participate enthusiastically,” she said.
“The mantra chosen by the Second Republic, ‘Zimbabwe is open for business,’ needs to be made a reality by sharing information that advances the national agenda.
“Zimbabwe cannot be seen as open for business if there is discord in the messages coming out of Government and our media houses as we will be sending wrong, mixed and confusing signals.”
The Information Minister added, “We are obliged as Government working with the media to ensure that the nation moves in unison as one entity, such that at the end of the day everyone plays their role in ensuring that this national goal is realised.
“That national responsibility or rather obligation to ensure that there is a shared national vision for the common good of everyone lies squarely on the shoulders of those that are gathered here.
“It is my wish that sooner rather later, there shall come a day when there is no reference to public or private press, but there is Zimbabwean press which tows the national flag in pursuit of our common goals.
“Zimbabwe’s ability to create wealth for its people hinges on how much all of us can contribute to the improvement of our national competitiveness in an anarchic world characterised by a vicious competition between states.”