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Foreign Firms Should Embrace Zimbabwe's Indigenization Law: VP Nkomo

  • Gibbs Dube

Vice President John Nkomo told the second annual business summit organized by the Ministry of Investment and Euromoney Conferences, attended by more than 200 local and foreign business executives, that the indigenization program is designed to empower poor blacks.

A two-day Zimbabwe Investment Conference opened in Harare Wednesday with calls by Vice President John Nkomo for foreign-owned companies to embrace the nation’s black economic empowerment program and Finance Minister Tendai Biti saying the economy is recording remarkable growth despite political hitches.

Nkomo told the second annual business summit organized by the Ministry of Investment and Euromoney Conferences, attended by more than 200 local and foreign business executives, that the program is designed to empower poor indigenous blacks.

But Biti said he is not happy with the manner in which authorities are implementing the controversial law.

"The challenge is the way we are doing it and it makes me very angry," he said, adding that "a law must be consistent and non-arbitrary."

Biti said the Zimbabwe economy is being boosted by high world mineral prices, this year’s good tobacco crop, tourism and the fast growing information and communication technology sector.

He said the country would record significant growth if political bickering in the unity government is minimized.

Biti further said Zimbabwe needs at least $14 billion to revive the economy following a decade-long downturn.

The country is currently saddled with a foreign debt of more than $9 billion.

Joseph Kanyekanye of the Confederation of Zimbabwe Industries said such conferences highlight potential areas of investment in Zimbabwe.

The conference brings together policymakers, businessmen, financiers and key overseas players.

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