Zimbabwean youth and others to receive USD 53.4 million from AfDB
Zimbabwean youth, tourism, water and sanitation, transportation, emergency power, and public finances are all slated to receive a major boost in 2014 from the African Development Bank Group (AfDB).
In a signing ceremony on 22 January between the Minister of Finance and Economic Development, Patrick Chinamasa, and the Bank Group’s Resident Representative, Mateus Magala, the AfDB provided the Zimbabwean government with six grants amounting to USD 53.4 million. Three of the grants, worth USD 39.9 million, will be funded from the Zimbabwe Multi-Donor Trust Fund (Zim-Fund) while the remaining ones, worth USD 13.5 million, are to be financed by the African Development Fund (ADF).
These projects are intended to help Zimbabwe to recover from a pre-2009 decade of economic decline which was characterised by hyperinflation, shortages, and a severe brain-drain. This resulted in poor basic service delivery, weak public sector governance and financial management as well as weak capacity of public institutions to deliver on their core functions. The projects will cover the following areas:
- Youth and Tourism Enhancement Project (ADF Grant - USD 4,158,000)
This will contribute to reducing poverty and youth unemployment by giving the Government greater financial latitude for developing tourism and youth services, particularly small- and medium-sized businesses that are run by youths in Zimbabwe’s 10 provinces.
- Governance and Institutional Strengthening Project (ADF grant - USD 8,008,000)
The project aims to improve transparency and effectiveness in public finance and economic management; to contribute to economic recovery and service delivery for all by strengthening public sector governance; to promote transparency and accountability practices in public procurement; and to improve audit and transparency in mineral resource development. All these tasks are considered as critical for improving governance and tackling corruption in Zimbabwe.
- Transport Sector Master Plan Study (ADF Grant - USD 1,335,200)
The study’s goal is to give the Government a comprehensive National Transport Sector Master Plan with a strategic framework and an investment plan to develop its transport infrastructure, and associated services, in a sustainable way. The proposed National Transport Master Plan Study is designed within the context of the newly launched National Transport Policy and in line with the Zimbabwe Agenda for Socio-Economic Transformation (Zim Asset 2013-2018).
- Emergency Power Infrastructure Rehabilitation Project, Phase II, Stage 1 (Zim-Fund Grant - USD 15,420,000) and Supplementary Grant for the Emergency Power Infrastructure Rehabilitation Project, Phase 1. (Zim-Fund Grant - USD 4,160,000)
Both of these projects aim to rehabilitate power transmission and distribution facilities throughout the country, as well as the Ash Handling Plant at the Hwange Power Station. This should bring about improved environmental management and ash handling at the Hwange Power Station, more reliable sub-transmission and distribution networks, and better electricity supply to the water treatment plants of Harare City and elsewhere.
- Urgent Water Supply & Sanitation Rehabilitation Project Phase 2, Stage 1 (Zim-Fund Grant - USD 19,840,000)
This project will focus on Harare’s infrastructure while preparatory activities for Chitungwiza, Redcliff and Ruwa are being carried out. The three-year project will benefit 1.9 million Zimbabweans by protecting public health and rehabilitating water and sanitation infrastructure. The interventions will be complemented with hygiene promotion targeting the most vulnerable segment of the population and support the local authorities to promote water conservation. The project will go a long way in alleviating the water woes currently being experienced in Zimbabwe.
During the signing ceremony, Magala re-affirmed the Bank’s commitment to continue working with the donors and the Government of Zimbabwe to address the debt situation and thereby ensure that over time more resources are mobilized for the country’s economic development to help the country achieve real economic transformation.
In his thank-you address, Minister Patrick Chinamasa called upon all beneficiary institutions to ensure smooth implementation of the projects by providing all the necessary support. He also urged development partners to scale up their contributions to Zim-Fund and encouraged non-participating partners to come on board.
The AfDB Group is committed to supporting the Government of Zimbabwe in its efforts to reduce poverty and to achieve equitable economic growth in the country. The approved resources will help the Zimbabwean Government to achieve its development goals as spelled out in the Zimbabwe Agenda for Socio-Economic Transformation (Zim Asset).
The Zim-Fund, which is administered by the AfDB, receives financial support from Australia, Denmark, Germany, Norway, Sweden, Switzerland and the United Kingdom.