Africa Moyo Senior Business Reporter
GOVERNMENT has allocated RTGS$30 million to the Industrial Development Corporation of Zimbabwe (IDCZ) for extension to distressed companies.
This was said by Industry and Commerce Minister Nqobizitha Mangaliso Ndlovu on Monday during his meeting with business member organisations (BMOs) and IDCZ officials in Harare.
Minister Ndlovu said the sanctions imposed by the United States and its Western allies since the turn of the millennium, have adversely impacted on the operations of many local companies, resulting in untold job losses.
He said it has become apparent that distressed companies be capacitated so that they ramp up capacity utilisation and employ more people in line with Government’s thrust of providing decent jobs to citizens.
Further, reviving industry is expected to transform the country into an Upper Middle Income economy with a per capita income of US$3 500 by 2030.
Said Minister Ndlovu: “We have made significant strides in our efforts to help bring back to full operations companies that have over the last two decades succumbed to the ruinous illegal sanctions imposed on the people of Zimbabwe.”
He added that Government remains convinced that most of the distressed companies are critical for the revival and growth of the economy.
“For some, their closure has left a vacuum that we currently fill with imports and this is unsustainable. Jobs have been lost in the process and we need to regain them.
“In this regard, the IDCZ is realigning its mandate to play its DFI (Development Finance Institution) role, which will see it play a leading role in the programme of resuscitating distressed companies.
“The Government allocated RTGS$30 million to IDCZ specifically for this purpose but mobilisation will be extended to the private sector so that we crowd fund and reach out to more companies in need,” said Minister Ndlovu.
Already, a database has been created of the companies and the IDCZ is working on an implementation plan to this effect.
Recently, the US Embassy in Zimbabwe posted on its Twitter handle that it still has about 84 individuals and 56 entities on the embargos, but insisted that the sanctions do not affect the approximately 16 million people.
“ . . . Sanctions do not target the people of Zimbabwe. #Truth: The US does not maintain comprehensive sanctions against Zimbabwe. Suggestions that the US intends to harm the Zimbabwean people with sanctions are false and misleading,” said the US Embassy in Harare.
However, analysts say it is bizarre how the US would claim that sanctions were not designed to hurt ordinary people when companies they are supposed to work for cannot borrow or move their clients’ funds.