The Zimbabwe Investment and Development Agency (ZIDA) and International Finance Corporation (IFC), a unit of the World Bank, have launched a survey to gauge investor sentiment on the country.
The survey will seek out how investors view Zimbabwe’s business environment, the policy and regulatory framework for Foreign Direct Investment (FDI), the quality and scope of services offered to investors by ZIDA and related government agencies, as well as any specific challenges that constrain investment.
ZIDA says it will use the survey findings to inform policy on Zimbabwe’s ability to attract and retain investment.
“This survey will deepen Zimbabwe’s efforts to change the narrative around the country as an investment destination,” said Douglas Munatsi, CEO of ZIDA.
IFC technical assistance will help ZIDA develop and administer the survey. The survey will be followed by a planned multi-year advisory support program with ZIDA to identify and support policy, institutional, legal and regulatory reforms to help attract Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) into Zimbabwe.
“Firsthand information from current and potential investors about the business and investment environment in Zimbabwe is the best tool to unlock opportunities for private sector growth. IFC is ready to support ZIDA in this very timely endeavor,” said Adamou Labara, IFC’s Country Manager for Eswatini, Lesotho, Namibia, South Africa and Zimbabwe.
Officially launched in December 2020, ZIDA was established through the Zimbabwe Investment and Development Agency Act to promote and protect investments in Zimbabwe.
“This support to ZIDA is intended to enhance ZIDA’s capacity to advocate for a policy and regulatory framework that improves Zimbabwe’s ability to attract and retain investment.
“Although the WBG and IFC are unable to develop lending operations or provide financing respectively to the public and private sector, there is a commitment across the World Bank Group to support development outcomes by providing technical assistance and advice,” said Mukami Kariuki, World Bank Country Manager for Zimbabwe.
The survey will be administered by Zimbabwean survey firm AdvisoryK and survey responses will be anonymous.
Zimbabwe’s efforts to grow FDI have been hurt by the country’s political environment and notoriously erratic economic policy. FDI into Zimbabwe rose to US$745 million in 2018 from US$349 million in 2017, but fell sharply to US$259 million in 2019.