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"The situation in Zimbabwe is not apocalyptic"

June 16 category:Economy
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"The situation in Zimbabwe is not apocalyptic"

Kalaa Mpinga, CEO of Mwana Africa

Jérôme Chatin

What made ​​you decide to open a gold mine in Zimbabwe? It was not a gamble?
I Do Not. What caused the collapse of the mining industry in the country, it is the control of the exchange rate. We had to sell our currency to the Central Bank at a rate unrelated to the country's economic fundamentals. She offered us 300,000 Zimbabwe dollars against one US dollar, when in the street, you could get 300 million. The national unity government has understood the need to liberalize the exchange rate and even went further by removing the Zimbabwean dollar and making the US dollar the national currency. From there, we returned to a normal economy. You can pay our employees and suppliers, who refused the Zimbabwean dollar, we can export, import, in summary freely enjoy our money. Since the economy began to restart. Last year in the same period, there were four daily flights between Harare and Johannesburg, and there was no need to book well in advance, now there are eight and all full.

Was it difficult to convince investors?
The first phase of rehabilitation in which injected $ 14 million, was self-financed. Mwana Africa has a group of shareholders that has seen others. Moreover, had it not been the catastrophic financial environment, Zimbabwe is a much more developed country, the vast majority of African countries. Banking, financial are very advanced. Despite years of neglect, the infrastructure is still above the average compared to what I know in Africa. It is a country which has a diversified industrial base. In Zimbabwe, it is not to build infrastructure or an economy, but to renovate, to capitalize. This is a very big difference.

You are therefore confident Yes. The Industrial Development Corporation (IDC), South African public organization dedicated to economic development, has just agreed to finance up to $ 10 million in the second phase of rehabilitation of the mine Freda Rebecca . This is the first time a government agency lends money to a company in Zimbabwe since the dollarization of the economy in April. You know, there is what is said of Zimbabwe and what it actually is. The world has an apocalyptic vision, while the country is normal. In Zimbabwe, as long as one does not care policy, it is quiet. I've never had trouble in recent years to bring in contractors to Bindura. And Zimbabweans who fled the country during hyperinflation want to return. When we restarted the business, we had to hire, or, in the last ten years, it was emptied of its brain mass. You should know that the country had one of the most advanced educational systems of the continent. He has trained battalions of engineers, technicians, lawyers, accountants ... We ourselves have lost three-quarters of our qualified staff. After publishing our job offers were received in the space of two weeks, 126 resumes, all Zimbabweans who came from around the world, including one from Papua New Guinea.


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