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‘We have to look for funding, expertise in Africa not just abroad’: Zimbabwe investment official

CAIRO, (The Southern African Times) – Egypt hosted the first forum of the heads of African investment promotion agencies (IPAs) on Saturday in Shram El Sheikh under the slogan “Integration for Development.”  

The forum was organized by the General Agency for Investment (GAFI) under the auspices of the Egyptian Cabinet. The event was attended by ministers and chairpersons of investment authorities from 34 African countries as well as representatives of African economic institutions.  

The IPAs Africa Forum 1 was inaugurated by Prime Minister Mostafa Madbouli. Top attendees included Secretary-General of the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) Wamkele Mene, the CEO of the World Association for Investment Promotion Agencies (WAIPA), and African Union (AU) Commissioner for Infrastructure and Energy Amani Abou Zeid. Further, Egyptian businesspeople who have had successful experiences of investment in Africa participants.

One of the panelists was the.current CEO of Zimbabwe’s newly formed Zimbabwe Investment and Development Agency Mr Tawanda Munatsi.

“We look for funding and expertise outside the continent but we have to look for funding and expertise inside the continent,” CEO of Zimbabwe Investment and Development Agency (ZIDA) Douglas Tawanda Munatsi said this on Saturday during the IPAs Africa Forum 1.

 “Beyond the AfCFTA, we have to focus on getting a robust financial system that would finance industrialization and innovation,” Munatsi added. Speaking of ZIDA, he said that “it is the youngest IPA in Africa. We’re just 1 year old.” 

With regard to its priorities, Munatsi clarified, “our goal is eliminating bureaucracy and be responsive.” Underlining investment opportunities in Zimbabwe, the official said, “ we have abundant gold resources….We have investment opportunities in tourism and roads.” Given that qualified human resources are crucial, Munatsi underscored that Zimbabwe has the highest rate of literacy on the continent “so we have a big knowledge economy sector.” 

Africa IPAs Forum 1 kicked off in Egypt’s Sharm El Sheikh having as slogan “Growth for Integration.” The forum is the first of its kind and is taking place on June 11-14 with the participation of ministers and chairpersons of investment promotion authorities at 34 African countries.

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