Tawanda Musarurwa Senior Business Reporter
Government has committed to bring efficient to the Zimbabwe Parks and Wildlife Management Authority (ZimParks) by commercialising the entity.
The move to restructure ZimParks is part of a broader Government strategy to reform numerous parastatals and state enterprises that have been operating inefficiently and as such have been a drain on the fiscus.
The authority manages one of the largest estates in the country, about 5 million hectares of land or 13 percent of Zimbabwe’s total land area.
Finance and Economic Development Minister Mthuli Ncube said this week that Government is looking for investors into the authority.
“We are looking for investors for ZimParks. We have decided to have a joint venture arrangement for the commercial arm of ZimParks. The facilities in our national parks are run down,” he said.
ZimParks is mandated with protecting and managing Zimbabwe’s wildlife population, but it also has a commercial arm that deals with tourism destinations and facilities.
The Zimbabwe Parks & Wildlife Management Authority operates under an Act of Parliament, the Parks and Wildlife Act of 1975.
ZimParks has a debt of around $21,5 million, and Government has indicated plans for the entity to pursue a debt restructuring to allow it more time to pay off obligations owed to various service providers.
Meanwhile, earlier this month Information, Publicity and Broadcasting Services Minister Monica Mutsvangwa said Government will provide an initial capital injection of equivalent to US$11,9 million to ZimParks to enhance its operations.