“Despite recent improvements by the Government of National Unity, the road to recovery is still a long one. If we want Zimbabwe to get back on the path towards longer-term development, we will need to carry on with our efforts to provide clean water and sanitation facilities to the population, alongside our food assistance programmes,” said Kristalina Georgieva, Commissioner for International Cooperation, Humanitarian Aid and Crisis Response.
Part of the money will also be used in a pilot livelihood support activities including cash transfers and voucher systems.
The organisation also said although dollarisation of the economy had improved the overall availability of food in the country, access to food was still difficult for those who do not have foreign currency.
“This is why the Commission is replacing food distribution with schemes aimed at injecting funds to improve food security through local purchases, in line with its March 2010 Communication on humanitarian food assistance,” it said.
Over recent years, the EU has been one of the largest donors in funding emergency water and sanitation interventions, as part of the integrated public health approach to tackle potential epidemics such as cholera, measles and typhus outbreaks in the country.
Zimbabwe’s economy is recovering after a decade of political and economic crisis. The inclusive government, formed last year, has brought back confidence into the economy with inflation under check.
EC is the overall main donor to the vulnerable populations of Zimbabwe, having provided €572 million (about US$742, 6 million) in both humanitarian and essential development aid to the population since 2002.
“EU funding has benefited a large part of the population: Water and sanitation interventions have reached 500,000 people, health interventions 700,000, whilst approximately 100,000 have benefited from food assistance support,” the organisation said.
The essential drug procurement and distribution actions have reached up to 7, 8 million people.