Govt gives IDC $30m boost

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TINASHE MAKICHI

The government has given the Industrial Develop­ment Corporation of Zimbabwe (IDCZ) $30m to kick-start its role as a development financing insti­tution and help local manufacturers, Finance Min­ister Mthuli Ncube has said. This comes after IDC is also engaging two prominent regional develop­ment finance institutions (names withheld) for a US$50m facility for the same cause.

“We have availed $30 million for the IDC to start playing its actual role of funding the private sector,” Ncube said. “We believe the IDC can play that role, and efforts are also underway to look for further funding for the IDCZ. Zimbabwe should become the manufacturing hub of Africa”.

The IDCZ’s mandate has been to drive industri­alisation, but in the past the state investment vehi­cle diverted and started to run its own companies.

Following a Cabinet resolution that the IDCZ should start providing development finance to in­dustry, the IDCZ approached IDC South Africa for US$20m to kick-start this role.

In 2016, the Office of Foreign Assets (OFAC) of the United States Department of Treasury removed IDCZ from the list of sanctions. This boosted the corporation’s prospects of executing its mandate, as the lifting of sanctions had a positive knock-on effect by triggering an unrestricted resumption of business with local, regional, and international sup­pliers and customers. The lifting of sanctions also enabled a competitive procurement of raw mate­rials. IDCZ has vast investments, covering vehicle assembling, cement and chemical manufacturing, real estate, fertiliser production, edible oils manu­facturing, mining, and industrial engineering among many others.

Its mandate is to establish and conduct any in­dustrial undertaking, to facilitate, promote, guide and assist the financing of new industrial under­taking (including small and medium-scale), and schemes for the expansion, better organisation and modernisation of operations of existing industries and industrial undertakings.