Govt’s payment delays hurt construction industry


Government’s delay in payment has hamstrung the local construction industry leading to the delay in completion of projects, the Zimbabwe Construction Industry Association (ZCIA) has said.

Speaking at the ED Mnangagwa Business Summit held last week in the capital Harare, the ZCIA architect Tsitsi Dzvukamanja, who spoke on behalf of the construction industry, said the delay was hurting the construction industry.

“It causes severe cash-flow problems to contractors, and this can have a devastating effect down the contractual payment chain, leading to the delay in the completion of projects and work stoppages, tax implications and penalties.

“Stakeholders’ requests that the government make payments timeously and consider tax payment models for the receipt of late payments,” Dzvukamanja said.

The government, she said, has infrastructure projects underway worth over US$2.5bn.

Some of the projects started five years ago.

These projects include the new Mbudzi Interchange project, the rehabilitation of roads across the country, the Marovanyati Dam, Gwayi-Shangani Dam, and the walling of Causeway Dam, among many other projects.

“To date, the government has spent over US$2,5bn on infrastructure projects, which are key enablers to the achievement of targets set under Vision 2030.

“This constitutes 34.5% of total capital development that has been set aside for various transport, water, public amenities, energy, irrigation, social services, and other infrastructural projects,” Dzvukamanja  said.

She said the construction industry  was  benefiting the most from the Infrastructure and Utilities Pillar under Vision 2030.

“The infrastructure and utilities pillar, envisages a modern, efficient, reliable, well-developed infrastructure which will be an enabler that catalyses Zimbabwe’s economic transformation.

“Government will develop a robust, elaborate, and resilient infrastructure through the rehabilitation and development of power, road, rail and air transport, water and sanitation, housing and ICT infrastructure,” Dzvukamanja said.

The construction industry is expected to  grow by 5.7%  this year, albeit lower than an estimate of 10.5% in 2022.

The anticipated growth is underpinned by on-going national developmental projects currently being implemented by the government, as well as private sector construction projects nationwide.

The growth of the sector will also be underpinned by other major projects such as the Victoria Falls Special Economic Zone (SEZ) , which is one of the key deliverables under NDS 1.

“The tourism SEZ will lead to the development of the Mause Integrated Tourism Resort, a new city that will have five-star hotels, upmarket shopping malls, commercial institutional entities, civic and convention centre, multi-purpose hotel school and central business district among other developments on the state land about 10km outside the current city of Victoria Falls.

“There are also plans to come up with a new Batoka City, which will create a tourism corridor stretching from Kazungula, west of Victoria Falls to Hwange, ” she said.

Government has also identified several other economic corridors across the country.

“The economic corridors are meant to attract investment and generate economic activities within a contiguous region, on the foundation of an efficient transportation system.

“They are meant to provide two important inputs for competitiveness, lower distribution costs and promote high-quality real estate. The process typically begins with creating transport linkages to connect the main economic nodes of a region, for example, its cities, industrial zones, and international trade gateways,” Dzvukamanja said.

She added: “This can include the rehabilitation and dualisation of roads, the construction of high-speed railways and the expansion of airports.”


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