Canada pledges to help Zimbabwe develop its ICT sector

By Patricia Mashiri

Canada has pledged to help Zimbabwe with its expertise in developing the Information communication technology (ICT) in Zimbabwe.

Speaking during the courtesy call on Supa Mandiwanzira, the Minister of Information and Technology and Cyber Security on 12 March 2018 in the capital, Mr Rene Cremonese, the Canadian ambassador to Zimbabwe said he visited to get a better understanding of the ministry’s roles, responsibilities and find a way on how Canada could help in developing the sector.

“I’m here on the Minister’s courtesy call to understand better the ministry’s roles, responsibilities and mandates and have strategic imperatives concerning ICTs. Canada is highly developed in terms of ICTs and we have a lot to offer to Zimbabwe.

“We will have projects and requirements which are needed by Zimbabwe and I will present accurate information to the business people in Canada who are interested in investing in Zimbabwe. We are impressed by the current President’s policy which shows that the country is open for business therefore we are ready to work with Zimbabwe,” Cremonese said.

Mandiwanzira said he showed the Canadian ambassador what Zimbabwe is doing and will draft business proposals where they would want investors.

“We have shown the ambassador what we are doing and he was interested in knowing what we are doing in education, cyber security and connectivity across the country and how we could look at initiatives including eLearning.

‘‘We are compiling business proposals that we would want our investors to look into and they will choose the specific areas where they would want to help us with. Canada will also help us in postal telecommunications and regulations because we want to improve our space regulations,” Mandiwanzira said.

The Minister said the investments by Canada will help in creating jobs for Zimbabweans. The employment opportunities include manufacturing and assembling of devices and computerisation of over 12000 schools. He also said there was need to improve the relationship between Canada and Zimbabwe to get ICT investments.

Canada has a coherent e-government and has gone through various phases of ICT development and Zimbabwe’s aim is to get to know how Canada reached its current position and copy from what they did to improve their ITC sector.

The country has started an initiative called “Innovation Drive” where it is promoting innovations by Zimbabweans and will learn more from Canadian institutions and from through the good relationship between the two countries.