British-based Lonzim Plc., an investment company which is mainly focused on Zimbabwe has reported 2009 earnings of £1 million on its extensive holdings in the Southern African country after posting a comparable loss in 2008.
LonZim earned a pre-tax profit of £1.08 million on holdings in the hospitality, financial services, chemicals and pharmaceuticals sector in 2009 compared with a loss of £1.09 million the previous year.
LonZim Chief Executive Officer, Geoffrey White, cited the country's mixed hard currency regime and the formation of a unity government in early 2009 as key factors in pulling the economy back from hyperinflation and decline.
White told VOA Studio 7 reporter Gibbs Dube that while the unity government continues to experience teething problems, Zimbabwe has become much more attractive to international investors. "What we have seen since February 2009 is ... strong commercial growth beginning to return to the economy whereas prior to 2009 the economy had become a barter economy,” he said.
He said economic progress is also reflected on the Zimbabwe Stock Exchange which "has done incredibly well over the last 10 months.”
LonZim has a market capitalization of some £14.7 million and its share price, last seen at 39 pence, is up 88 percent from a year ago.
Zimbabwe's so-called inclusive government has struggled since its formation to raise an estimated US$8 billion for national reconstruction following a decade of economic decline due to political gridlock and poor governance.
Western donors and some investors have indicated they are willing to step up their involvement in Zimbabwe if convincing reforms are implemented.