HARARE, October 14 (The Source) – The European Union Head of Delegation Philippe Van Damme says Zimbabwe needs to address policy inconsistencies and eliminate corruption to unlock funding.
“The reforms have to be done in the interests of the people of this country. Look into Lima agenda, clarify indigenisation policy and sort out the land outstanding issues because security of land is security of investment, collateral to access bank funding and so forth…and it’s obvious what a domestic or international investor needs is a secure and predictable legal framework,” said Van Damme in an interview to mark the halfway point of his term.
“We insist policy reforms because these reforms will help government grow out of its problems.”
Zimbabwe missed a self-imposed June 30 deadline to repay $1,8 billion in arrears owed to the World Bank, International Monetary Fund and African Development Bank. The multilateral lenders have emphasized on payment of the arrears as a prerequisite for any possible future funding.
Corruption has become endemic in Zimbabwe, and the country is losing at least $1 billion annually to the vice, with public officials, police and local government officials among the worst offenders, according to a recent report by watchdog Transparency International.
“It’s clear from all perspectives that as long as there are huge volumes of corruption it’s difficult to imagine that we will inject money in the economy. We are not injecting money in an economy which is leaking,” said Van Damme.