Indigenisation Regulations Confusion

President Robert Mugabe insisted on Wednesday that: “There is no nullification of the indigenisation and economic empowerment law, no nullification of the regulations which have been made.”

Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai’s Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) said the regulations were being revised.

James Maridadi, the Prime Minister’s spokesperson, told SW Radio Thursday that cabinet had ‘set aside’ the controversial indigenisation regulations, pending further consultations.

Maridadi said the partners in government are not disputing the indigenisation law which aims to correct ‘economic imbalances’, but that there is dispute over the regulations which will enforce the law.

“The concern was in the current state they would not be able to attract investors,” he was quoted as saying. “They would criminalise investors and they would not be as broad based as we would wish them to be.”

The Herald mentioned FBC, MBCA and ABC Holdings as having submitted their proposals while Barclays and Stanbic were being said to be “unnecessarily difficult” and had not made any positive communications. Standard Chartered Bank was said to have asked for an extension for submission, which Government had reportedly granted.

Other firms cited as having submitted proposals are Zimplats, Bindura Nickel, Mimosa Gold Mine, La Farge Cement, Sisk Construction, OK Zimbabwe, Delta Beverages, Econet and British American Tobacco.

All companies were supposed to have made their submissions by Wednesday.

The indigenisation regulations have sparked controversy as they are not investor friendly. The Zimbabwe Stock Exchange, ZSE, said some investors had withheld investments, citing the controversial law.

Zimbabwe has failed to raise the US 10 billion it needs to revive its economy. Some western governments and international financiers have refused to support Zimbabwe financially until there is real democracy. The inclusive government is not functioning properly as Zanu PF and the two Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) formations have failed to fully implement the Global Political Agreement.