A high-powered Zimbabwean business delegation told skeptical investors in Washington this week to consider investing in the country despite an ongoing indigenization program, divisions within the government and local financial market liquidity constraints.
The delegation said foreign investors are not well enough informed about opportunities in Zimbabwe ranging from minerals to the fast-recovering agricultural sector.
Key speaker Tawanda Gumbo, chief executive in Zimbabwe of international accounting firm Deloitte Touche, said foreigners are worried about black empowerment given what happened to thousands of white commercial farmers under land reform after 2000.
US Ambassador to Zimbabwe Charles Ray said Zimbabwean trade is on the rise and investors from around the world are showing increased interest in the country.
"This is not to say that Zimbabwe is without its risks or challenges,” Ray said, noting the continued divisions within a government combining President Robert Mugabe's ZANU-PF with Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai's Movement for Democratic Change. "But there is also willingness on all sides to move the political process forward and a broad recognition of the value of political stability to economic recovery.”
Declared Ray: "Zimbabwe is changing and changing quickly."
Some US investors expressed concern they may lose their property if they invest in the country given the unfolding indigenization process and weak property rights.