President Emmerson Mnangagwa has said time to invest in Zimbabwe is now and those sitting on the fence risk losing out on investment opportunities.
Cde Mnangagwa said a number of potential investors were coming to make arrangements, saying they will come immediately after the elections to be held on July 30. He, however, said Government had made it clear to such investors that it would not wait for them but will instead deal with those that want to invest now.
They say the early bird catches the worm so investors that decide to invest now are likely to enjoy the best investment opportunities compared to those that will come later. There is likely to be a scramble for investment opportunities soon after the elections hence the need to take heed of President Mnangagwa’s advice.
Zimbabwe is already a hive of activity as the country is receiving business delegations from across the globe seeking investment opportunities every week.
This week the country played host to the Chinese business delegation led by the Governor of Zhejiang province and secretary of the provincial committee of the Communist Party of the People’s Republic of China Mr Che Jun.
Cde Mnangagwa said he was impressed by the huge size of the Chinese delegation which he described as the first of its kind from China since independence. The delegation had businesspeople from various sectors willing to partner their Zimbabwean counterparts to do business here.
President Mnangagwa told the delegation during the Zimbabwe-China Business Forum in Harare on Monday that Zimbabwe is open to Chinese investment in all sectors of the economy. He said the country has huge potential and vast opportunities in mining, agriculture, financial services, energy, infrastructure, tourism, water and sanitation.
The Chinese business delegation is one of the many that have so far visited the country to scout for investment opportunities as evidenced by the significant increase in hotels occupancy rates since last November when the new administration took over.
The growing number of foreign investors stampeding to explore investment opportunities in the various sectors of the economy is a confirmation of the growing confidence in Zimbabwe under the new dispensation. The Government has declared that Zimbabwe is open for business and is already enjoying the benefits of this new policy thrust.
Last month Zimbabwe signed a $1 billion deal with the Sinosteel Corp that will see the Chinese firm building a 400 megawatt coal bed methane power plant in Matabeleland North province and setting up ferrochrome smelters at its local unit at Zimasco. The investment, with potential to create 250 000 jobs, will be implemented in phases.
The first phase involves the drilling of two coal bed methane (CBM) wells at Shangani grants to fire 12MW pilot power station. The company will also build two ferrochrome smelters in Zvishavane and another one in Kwekwe where it already operates the country’s largest ferrochrome plant.
Sinosteel Corp is one of the companies that have moved in quickly to exploit Zimbabwe’s investment opportunities as opposed to waiting for the elections.
Local companies or potential investors that are holding onto their resources intending to invest after elections should not cry foul when the investment space is all taken up by foreigners.