Addressing Zimbabwean business climate

Addressing Zimbabwean business climate
Published: 04 February 2018 (300 Views)
The recent amendments to the Indigenisation and Empowerment Act and the slight adjustments on petroleum levies are massive steps to entice investors as Zimbabwe opens up for new business.

Other positives on the ease of doing business include the reduced waiting periods for permits, licenses, tax clearances and company registration time frames. Addressing the ease of doing business is part of transforming a composite local business climate which may need more time and government commitment to fully develop.

There is no doubt that the country has what it takes to compete with the best on the African continent or at least our SADC peers in terms of FDI Inflows.

The World Bank Report (2017) on the ease of doing business ranks Zimbabwe on 159 out 190 countries.

The country averaged 163 from 2008 to 2017, reaching an all-time worst of 171 in 2011 and a record best of 153 in 2014 after the introduction of the multi-currency system.

The ease of doing business matters because the higher the score, the more favourable the business climate to potential investors. When investors make decisions on how to capitalise on their assets, various aspects come into play apart from the return on capital.

Some of the aspects include taxation, direct production costs, exchange rates, labour laws, inflation rate, technology banking regulations and repatriation of dividends.

All these aspects may not necessarily be in the purview of the government since private players and regulatory authorities also come into play.

Nonetheless, the following aspects represent the policies which have a long term effect on the local business environment. These can be actioned now whilst the iron is still hot on improving government efficiency and attracting FDI.

One-Stop-Shop Investment Centre

Centralising all investment approvals within Zimbabwe Investment Authority (ZIA) offices is now urgent. The current process where investors move from one government office or department to the other is now old, bureaucratic and inefficient.

The OSSIC provides information on all procedures to invest in Zimbabwe namely incorporation of companies, applying for investment licences, registration of the various tax heads and fiscal incentives, work and residence permits, indigenisation clearance, environmental management certification, acquisition of land and shop licences, acquisition of mining titles and other operational permits. Making sure that the OSSIC is online would make Zimbabwe more accessible to a wider range of investors by a simple visit on the ZIA Website or Office.

This will effectively reduce processing and turnaround times for permits, licenses, clearance forms and registrations.

Zambia, Angola and Mozambique have moved ahead with South Africa since the turn of the century and are now attracting billions in investment yearly. Their investment figures and GDP paint the whole picture.


Electronic governance or e-governance is the application of information and communication technology (ICT) for delivering government services, exchange information and communication transactions.

The Zimbabwean Government has a lot to embrace from fellow African countries like Kenya, Tanzania and South Africa where e-governance has revolutionised government processes and improved efficiency in every industry. Government ministries should have accessible databases for entities or players in their sector for example farmers, miners, manufacturers and tourism players.

This information is vital for investors and local financiers who seek business opportunities or partnerships. Zimbabwe is one of the largest producers of platinum, gold, diamond, nickel and other strategic minerals but there is no information on the size of the deposits which is usable to investors or financiers locally or internationally.

Other aspects that we are still lagging behind include enterprise resource systems such as SAP, PASTEL, Online Registration Confirmations and Online Payments in government.

These systems reduce human manipulation, promote departmental coordination and improve efficiency thereby saving the government millions. Our systems are still manual, slow and prone to corruption at all levels of the government.

Tax Reforms

Tax reviews in key sectors such as petroleum, telecoms, mining and finance are pivotal in reducing production costs or enhancing product competitiveness on the export market.

The government needs to move to a volume based taxation model so as to encourage investment, innovation and growth from private players.

For example taxes on financial transactions (RTGS), local and international calls, duty and levies on petroleum products and royalties on mining products such as gold, nickel, chrome and platinum need to be aligned with our regional peers who incur similar costs in production or importation from the same suppliers.

A quick survey in SADC on all these levies will clearly have Zimbabwe on top of the table but last on investment or capacity utilisation.

Setting up an investor's forum

The logic behind such a forum would be to enable leadership to engage investors more frequently and get first-hand information on local investment constraints and international business trends. This input will then be used to align our investment policies and continuously improve the local business climate in a proactive manner.

Victor Bhoroma is business analyst with expertise in strategic marketing and business management aspects. He is a marketer by profession and holds an MBA from the University of Zimbabwe (UZ). For feedback, mail him on or Skype: victor.bhoroma1.

- Victor Bhoroma

Tags: telecoms, SADC, RTGS,

You May Like These Videos


There are no comments.

Latest stories

Trump cancels meeting with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un

by Staff reprter | 24 May 2018 | 104 Views

How new teachers in Zimbabwe learn to do their jobs

by Nhlanhla Mpofu, Sol Plaatje University and Lizette J de Jager, University of Pretoria | 24 May 2018 | 97 Views

Mnangagwa's 18 children

by Staff reporter | 24 May 2018 | 149 Views

Mnangagwa will shoot to stay in power say Hungwe

by Staff reporter | 24 May 2018 | 154 Views

Reprieve for Mugabe 'robber'

by Staff reporter | 24 May 2018 | 90 Views

Undenge alleges political persecution

by Staff reporter | 24 May 2018 | 77 Views

Mujuru, step children fight takes a new twist

by Staff reporter | 24 May 2018 | 84 Views

Chamisa comes under fire

by Staff reporter | 24 May 2018 | 98 Views

Fuel shortages persist

by Staff reporter | 24 May 2018 | 65 Views

Top cops fingered in smuggling

by Staff reporter | 24 May 2018 | 59 Views

Mnangagwa lauded for not forcing people to rally

by Staff reporter | 24 May 2018 | 81 Views

Mugabe keeps Zimbabweans MPs guessing

by Staff reporter | 24 May 2018 | 65 Views

Africa Day: internet freedoms, a way to democracy

by Patience Sibanda | 24 May 2018 | 70 Views

Duchess Meghan is pregnant?

by Staff reporter | 24 May 2018 | 98 Views

MDC-T orders primary election rerun.. Zanu-PF disease

by A Mhlongo | 24 May 2018 | 68 Views

Obiang Nguema jets in

by Staff reporter | 24 May 2018 | 77 Views

Mugabe warnes by lawmakers

by Staff reporter | 24 May 2018 | 94 Views

Tips for improving your kitchen

by Staff Reporter | 24 May 2018 | 66 Views

Mnangagwa's unit an attack on prosecutorial independence

by Staff reporter | 24 May 2018 | 63 Views

Chiefs seek peace order against Obert Mpofu

by Staff reporter | 24 May 2018 | 64 Views

Moving away from the death penalty in Zimbabwe - has the time come for change?

by Parvais Jabbar and Val Ingham-Thorpe | 24 May 2018 | 58 Views

70% of Zimbabwe's DNA test results NEGATIVE

by Staff reporetr | 24 May 2018 | 84 Views

Stabbed by ex-wife's boyfriend

by Staff reporter | 24 May 2018 | 58 Views

Mnangagwa's office exonerates Undenge

by Staff reporter | 24 May 2018 | 212 Views

Local company to print ballot papers

by Staff reporter | 24 May 2018 | 217 Views

Mnangagwa's anti-corruption charade unravels

by Staff reporter | 24 May 2018 | 92 Views

EU offers fund to audit Zim's first biometric voters' roll

by Staff reporter | 24 May 2018 | 87 Views

Mukupe in more trouble

by Staff reporter | 24 May 2018 | 252 Views

Petina Gappah targets Mukupe in smear campaign?

by Staff reporter | 24 May 2018 | 265 Views

Mnangagwa bows to Chinese pressure

by Staff reporter | 24 May 2018 | 193 Views

Mining speculators invade Zimbabwe's Great Dyke

by Staff reporter | 24 May 2018 | 93 Views

Woman discovers hubby's lover is HIV+, takes poison

by Simbarashe Sithole | 24 May 2018 | 97 Views

Attack on Khupe is criminal - Mwonzora

by Stephen Jakes | 24 May 2018 | 235 Views

NRZ's $400m mega deal equipment incompatible

by Staff reporter | 24 May 2018 | 157 Views