Land Issues still in the Way of Growth

Speaking at the Zimbabwe Economic Policy Analysis and Research Unit (Ziparu) workshop in Harare yesterday, World Bank finance and private sector development specialist Crispen Mawadza said agriculture was critical, but the land issue which is still under dispute remained a challenge. “Agriculture is the key, but the challenge we have, we still have the unresolved land question. If we do not settle the land question we will still have serious challenges in the future,” Mawadza said.

Mawadza said there was need for Zimbabwe to deal with the compensation issue so that industry could compete. “As long as industry is worried we are not going to re-industrialise Zimbabwe as fast as we want,” Mawadza said. He said access to credit was one of the strategies for the re-industrialisation of the economy, but there were other issues working against it. “If we want to talk about recapitalisation, we should not talk of one thing,” Mawadza said. He said a recent World Bank survey pointed to key areas which included the availability of electricity, water, the land question, trade policies and transportation, among many others, as key to the re-industrialisation of the Zimbabwean economy. “There is an average of seven days blockage of electricity and access to water. Those are the things working against re-industrialisation apart from bank credit,” Mawadza said.

Mawadza said in the last decade, the country had gone through three stages of de-capitalisation which were the 2005 Murambatsvina, hyperinflation and dollarisation.

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