Korea-Africa Summit: President Mnangagwa shares progress and perspectives on developing Zimbabwe


spiked online media

in , ,
Getting your Trinity Audio player ready…

In his address to Zimbabweans based in the Republic of Korea during a diaspora engagement meeting at the Korea-Africa Summit yesterday, President Emmerson Mnangagwa shared progress as well as perspectives on developing the country.

He said over the years, since the advent of the Second Republic, he took it upon himself to always engage with citizens and nationals on the sidelines of his international engagements. In doing so, he remains guided by the common and shared desire to see the country prosper and fellow citizens realizing a higher quality of life.
In doing so, he encouraged citizens in the diaspora to openly share their views and to come forward to play their part, individually and collectively to build the “Zimbabwe we want and an empowered Upper-Middle Income Society by 2030”.
President Mnangagwa assured diasporans that his Administration is committed to accelerating the development, modernization, and industrialization of the country.
“However, all of us have the duty and responsibility to build our motherland, brick upon brick and stone upon stone. The government is creating an enabling environment for all Zimbabweans, both at home and in the Diaspora to actively participate in all sectors of the economy. This is the independence, freedom, sovereignty, and right to be masters of our destiny that many sons and daughters of our country sacrificed their lives for.
“In the spirit of leaving no one and no place behind, my Government has rolled out devolution, to empower communities, beginning at the local ward and district levels right up to provinces to spearhead their development priorities towards the socio-economic transformation of their areas and provinces. I am encouraged by the feedback I have received from the Provincial offices about the positive response of Zimbabweans in the Diaspora concerning investment opportunities throughout the country,” President Mnangagwa said.
The Second Republic is on course to realize sustainable development and the attainment of an Upper-Middle Income Society by the year 2030. In this regard, the Government is conscious of the role that citizens in the diaspora must play through mutually beneficial partnerships and investments. The government stands ready to harness diasporans’ experience and expertise which spans across all sectors of the economy so as to leap-frog skills transfer and the modernization and industrialization of the country.
He said Zimbabweans in the Republic of Korea have been exposed to robust and well-developed science, technologies, and innovation ecosystems, adding that the experience and knowledge acquired in this respect should be eventually channeled back home.
The President alluded to sector-by-sector developmental highlights.
He said the most important sector is agriculture – not only because it is the mainstay of our economy, but also because without food for the people, all other sectors cannot be a success. Zimbabwe embarked on land reform and invited those interested in the sector to go into Joint Ventures with those who have been allocated farms. Alternatively, he said they are free to pursue other areas of business along the agriculture value chain or food processing industries.
Despite the El Nino, Zimbabwe continues to experience unprecedented increases in agriculture production and productivity throughout all categories of the agriculture sub-sectors. Pfumvudza/Intwasa has been a great success.
To further mitigate the negative impact of climate change, the government is building dams in all 8 rural provinces and drilling boreholes as well as setting up Agriculture Village Business Units in all the country’s 35,000 villages. Similar facilities are being set up in schools and within Vocational Training centres.
On the broader economic front, efforts by the Government to maintain a stable macro-economic environment, entrench national pride and identity as well as reduce exchange rate volatility, have seen the introduction of a new structured currency, the Zimbabwe Gold (ZiG). He said Zimbabweans must continue to support their local currency.
The mining sector has grown from a US$2.7 billion sector in 2017, to the current US$12 billion in 2023. The government continues to pursue the policy of beneficiation so that citizens derive maximum value from their country’s rich mineral resource endowment.
Models are being implemented in the mining sector to make sure that communities as well as the country realize sustainable development as a result of mining revenue.
Tourist arrivals continue to grow, while the range of tourism products and quality of facilities have significantly improved. Increased capacity utilization in the manufacturing sector has resulted in locally made goods and products dominating the shop space.
Infrastructure development has seen the fast-paced construction of roads dams, and bridges, along with social service amenities such as schools and clinics. All are undertaken by locals using their own domestic resources. However, these activities are a process and development is gradual, but no place will be left behind in the modernization and development of our country.
President Mnangagwa said development in science, technology, and innovation within the education sector is unprecedented. Innovation hubs and industrial parks have been established at all state universities.
Primary and secondary school levels are also being channeled along the science, technology, and innovation pathways. This is how developed countries realized their present modernity. The country is on the right course.
On the international relations front, the President said, “Zimbabwe is a friend to all and an enemy to none”. We continue to implement a policy of Engagement and Re-engagement with all countries within the community of nations who wish to collaborate with us based on respect and mutually beneficial relations.”
He highlighted that Diaspora contributions through financial remittances have played a significant role in the resuscitation and stabilization of the economy. Remittances are now the second-largest source of foreign currency inflows into the country after mining.
Financial remittances for the year 2024 are on course to surpass the US$1.8 billion received in 2023.
This saw an increase of 18% in remittances during the first quarter of 2024, amounting to US$494 million compared with US$420 million received during the same period in 2023.
He said the Diaspora community’s collective efforts are going a long way towards the development of Zimbabwe and challenged the Diaspora community to diversify their investments into productive sectors. Those keen to invest back home were assured that the government has made deliberate efforts to streamline bottlenecks and challenges being faced by those wanting to invest back home. The ease of doing business environment will be continuously improved not just for foreign investors but for local Zimbabwean investors and businesses as well.
Meanwhile, the National Diaspora Taskforce and the Diplomatic Missions have been soliciting diasporans’ views and inputs for the review of the Zimbabwe Diaspora Policy
As a listening Government, dedicated focal persons across all Government Ministries, Agencies, and Departments, have been identified and mandated to promptly address Diaspora inquiries.