BY LORRAINE MUROMO
PRESIDENT Emmerson Mnangagwa should use the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, to re-engagement investors to help drag Zimbabwe out of a debilitating economic quagmire, analylists have said.
Mnangagwa left the country for Davos on Sunday night to join 50 other Heads of State to deliberate on economic policies and other challenges that the globe is facing.
The Davos meeting comes as Zimbabwe is struggling economically due to inflation, corruption and abuse of property rights, which have deterred investors.
Concerns abound that Zimbabwe’s attendance at the Davos meeting is not a priority because the country ill-affords sending a bloated delegation to the talk-show.
Mnangagwa first attended the Davos World Economic Forum meeting in 2018 chanting: “Zimbabwe is open for business”, but since then business has found it tough going as government failed to create favourable conditions for businesses to thrive.
Economists have urged Mnangagwa to grab the chance in Davos to salvage Zimbabwe’s economic ship and put it back on course.
“It’s an opportunity for our delegation to meet with investors and sell the Zimbabwean story. It is an opportunity for the government to go beyond the rhetoric of the forum and continue with implementing the right kind of institutional and micro-economic reforms that will inspire greater confidence in investors,” economist Prosper Chitambara said.
“Zimbabwe is competing with a lot of countries for investors and capital inflow. It needs to engage, but it’s also important to put in place the right institutions and reforms to deal with corruption. Those are the kind of reforms investors are really looking out for,” he added.
Economist Yona Menon Banda weighed in saying: “The major outcomes from the Davos Forum are a culmination of effective economic and foreign policy. It’s a useful platform, and I think pursuing funding for climate change adaption would be a good idea. There is a big need for climate smart agriculture, and it’s a big developmental issue that is expected to draw a lot of funding from the developed world.”
Political analyst Rejoice Ngwenya, however, begged to differ.
“Millions of United States dollars have been spent in travel costs across the globe in pursuit of countless business agreements. There is nothing to show for it other than poverty, a valueless local currency and unemployment. Davos is for serious leaders with impeccable records of business acumen. No sane investor will come to a country that ignores both property and human rights,” said Ngwenya.
Political analyst Methuseli Moyo said: “The presence of the President there cannot be queried. Zimbabwe needs to end its isolation and collaborate more with the international community. The Davos summit is a critical summit where useful contacts and impressions are made.”
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