1. Zimbabwe, UK launch trade deal
The International Trade Centre (ITC) has hailed the New Dispensation for opening up the economy to international businesses whose contribution to the Zimbabwean economy has the potential to improve people’s lives.
Speaking at the launch of a Zimbabwe/United Kingdom Trade Partnership Programme which is poised to open market opportunities for Zimbabwean horticultural produce into the UK, ITC executive director Ms. Pamela Coke-Hamilton said the partnership will have a positive impact on small holder farmers.
2. Door shut on non-Zupco kombis
Private Kombis and pirate taxes remain banned from carrying commuters and travellers as part of the precautions to contain the spread of Covid-19. However, owners of suitable kombis can still apply to join the Zimbabwe United Passenger Company (zupco) franchise.
In a statement yesterday, the Ministry of Local Government and Public Works insisted that only zupco was allowed to ferry passengers.
Zupco, the private buses and kombis operating under its franchise, meet set health and safety standards that minimize risk to passengers.
“This is a health-induced transport strategy, that is meant to ensure that the further spread of Covid-19 is contained,” said the ministry.
3. President caps 1 347 at Bindura University
President Mnangagwa today capped 1 347 students at Bindura University of Science Education (BUSE) in an event filled day that saw him tour several projects that the institution is undertaking.
The bulk of the students were capped virtually as part of measures to contain the spread of Covid-19.
President Mnangagwa, who is also Chancellor of the university, toured a goat project near Shamva where breeding of exotic and indigenous goats through artificial insemination is taking place.
He was also expected to officially open an optometry clinic in Bindura Town.
4. Govt acts on corruption in land distribution
Government has reviewed the policy on allocation of vacant land and restructured the Provincial and District Lands committee to curb rampant corruption.
Lands, Agriculture, Water, and Rural Resettlement Minister Anxious Masuka said the revised guidelines on allocation of land will target multiple farm owners, abandoned farms, derelict land, underutilised farms and productive farms that are above farm size.
Minister Masuka said this in the National Assembly while responding to questions from Mwenezi West MP, Cde Priscilla Moyo (Zanu-PF) who had asked about Government’s policy regarding vacant land and what was being done to curb corruption in land allocations.
5. Over 130 000 HIV positive people in Mashonaland East on ART
At least 137 554 people, including 6 873 children, living with HIV in Mashonaland East province were initiated on Anti-Retroviral Therapy (ART) as of June this year.
An estimated 188 254 people in the province are reportedly living with HIV. This came out at a National AIDS Council (NAC) stakeholders’ meeting to update on activities carried out during the second quarter of the year.
Goromonzi District Aids Coordinator Mr. Graham Mafoko presented the provincial position on treatment, care and support.
6. Child marriages worry Chimanimani communities
Villagers in Chimanimani have raised concern over the increase in cases of early marriages, which has seen a significant decline in the number of girls reaching Ordinary Level.
The situation has been worsened by the communities’ proximity to the border with Mozambique where some young girls relocate once they get married.
Manicaland shares a long stretch of border with Mozambique in four districts where there is free movement of people through unofficial entry points.
According to Mutsvangwa villagers, both the primary and secondary schools have become a hunting ground for men who lure young girls with the promise of buying goodies for them.
Speaking during a recent media tour of communities working with the Regional Psychosocial Support Initiative (REPSSI), Mutsvangwa ward 23 councillor Mr. Joel Dhumakwezu, said there was need for more awareness campaigns to end child marriages.
7. Positive sentiment returns to ZSE
POSITIVE sentiment has returned on the Zimbabwe Stock Exchange (ZSE), helping to drive activity on the market, as the bourse closed in the black led by the biggest counter, CBZ.
This saw three of the benchmark indices close pointing northwards during the week to Wednesday.
The primary indicator, the ZSE All Share Index gained by 2 percent to close at 1 496 points on gains recorded across the board.
The market heavies, the ZSE Top 10 paced the fastest with a 4,69 percent gain to close at 966 points while the ZSE Top 15 rose by 4,14 percent to 1 151 points.
8. Mining export potential lifted
Zimbabwe’s mining sector has potential to export US$18 billion annually, up from about US$2, 7 billion achieved in 2017, the country’s ambassador to Australia Joe Mhishi has said.
Ambassador Mhishi was speaking at the ongoing investment conference in Perth, Africa Down Under (ADU), which brings investors scouting for opportunities in Africa under one roof.
ADU prides itself with delivering a leading forum for Australia-Africa business relations and having been introduced to raise awareness of Australia’s interests in African mining and energy.
With its vast but largely under exploited mining sector potential, Zimbabwe is one of the major investment green shoots on the continent, which investors are taking a keen interest in and this has been further boosted by President Mnangagwa’s “Zimbabwe is open for business” drive.
9. Zesa starts clearing coal producers’ $1,2bn debt
State-owned power utility, Zesa Holdings, has started paying coal miners after the debt ballooned to over $1, 2 billion over the past few months.
The surging debt was beginning to affect coal supplies to Zesa’s major thermal power stations, including Hwange, with the suppliers indicating seriously incapacitation.
Zesa experienced a severe deterioration in cash flows between March and September this year.
This was largely due to a sub economic tariff, which had not been adjusted upwards in line with inflation and exchange rate as the Government sought to cushion citizens from the devastating effects of Covid-19 induced lockdown.
10. ZCDC working on diamond value addition plan
An ambitious plan to ensure Zimbabwe generates more revenue from diamonds through value addition and beneficiation, has been set in motion while a massive global marketing of the gems will also be pursued from next year.
Critically, revenue from the sale of diamonds will be channelled towards development of infrastructure such as roads, bridges, shopping malls and supporting communities from which they operate with income generating projects.
This was said by Zimbabwe Consolidated Diamond Company (ZCDC) chief executive officer, Mr Mark Mabhudhu, in an exclusive interview with The Herald Finance & Business last week.