German investors to scout for Zimbabwe mining opportunities

German investors to scout for Zimbabwe mining opportunities

HARARE, April 13 (The Source) – A team of German investors is next week expected in Zimbabwe to seek opportunities in the mining sector, as relations between Harare and Western states continue to improve after nearly two decades of the southern African state’s isolation over alleged rights abuses.

Mining has overtaken agriculture as the key driver of Zimbabwe’s economy, accounting for nearly 60 percents of exports.

Sources close to the developments said the delegation will meet with officials from the Chamber of Mines of Zimbabwe as the country continues to reach out to the West for investments.

The visit comes at a time exports to the European Union have grown by 500 percent over the last year.

“The potential investors will be in the country from April 20 to 23. As you might be aware the, mining sector requires huge funding to boost output as well as meet some of government’s aspirations. We hope that this visit will aid in attracting that capital,” the official said.

The EU has in the past held interests in mining before relations between Zimbabwe and Berlin broke down over a decade ago over alleged human rights abuses and electoral theft by President Robert Mugabe’s administration. Mugabe denies the charges.

The bloc has gradually eased the sanctions since 2009 when the veteran ruler agreed to share power with the opposition after a disputed 2008 poll, and has continued to improve ties despite yet another controversial election in 2013 which extended Mugabe’s 34 year-old rule.

The EU eventually lifted the blockade in November last year, but maintains a travel ban and asset freeze on Mugabe Harare sees the restoration of ties as a catalyst for increasing bilateral trade.