Green signals from Washington

23 Sep, 2018 - 00:09 0 Views
Green signals from Washington

The Sunday Mail

The following has been extracted from His Excellency President Emmerson D Mnangagwa’s interview with Bloomberg TV in New York, the United States on September 21, 2018

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This is a new dispensation; we must show that indeed we are creating a new environment, a new path, a new vision for our country.

And in that pursuit we are to look at what reforms to bring about in the field of economics, that is the economy, in our democracy, political, all those areas.

We have in the past eight months done a lot to change the perception about our country.

We want to move away from that and open up and embrace the international community and open Zimbabwe for business.

Our economy is primarily agricultural, so in that area, we need to modernise, we need to industrialise our agriculture, we need to mechanise our agriculture, and also to make sure we have food security in the country.

The issue of climate change – we are making sure we have enough water bodies in the country so that we can have irrigation, guaranteed hectarage in the country, so that whether there is drought or no drought, we have irrigation in the country.

On austerity

We have to be very sober. It is true that our fiscal balance is bad and we must be honest to our people as to what we want to achieve and to do.

So there is need for us to apply fundamentals that may be harsh to our people, but are necessary for us to cross the bridge.

Yes, we have resources.

We also have introduced reforms in mining. Like the Indigenisation Act, we have removed that to a greater extent and it is to attract foreign investment.

The entire world is open (to come to Zimbabwe). Others quickly come in, others look for whether we are honest or not.

And we understand that after the perception that has been there, we cannot begrudge those who would like to wait and see, but we are saying we must be judged by matching our talk with our action.

From day one, I have preached unity, peace and love among our people; that message has not changed, I have intensified it.

It is (common) worldwide that if a party loses elections, not everybody accepts losing gracefully. But this happens and I do not think it is new in Zimbabwe.

On the opposition

Under our Commonwealth parliamentary democracy, the opposition is recognised, you recognise the leader of the opposition in Parliament.

Under the former administration, there was no formal recognition of the opposition leader, but now under my administration, we are embracing the Commonwealth approach to parliamentary democracy, where you recognise the leader of the opposition and he is given certain recognition and perks in Parliament.

On geo-political relations

I have no problem with China at all, but I am embracing the entire (international) community to say Zimbabwe is open for business.

Things are changing (relations with Britain).

The rapport and the engagement with Britain is going on very well. Germany’s Chancellor sent in a minister; again our relations with Germany are coming back.

The same with France. I will be meeting with the Belgian Prime Minister here.

So we feel that the entire world is opening up. I have seen several high-level officials from the US administration who I have met in Harare. I also believe that the green signals I have received from Washington are indicative of (improving relations).

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