ZIM PROGRESS

The signing of a new investment agreement between Tsingshan Holdings of China and the Zimbabwe government last week could not have come at a better time than now.

The steel giant signed an agreement that will see it expand its existing operations in the country while at the same time establishing other projects, including the construction of a new power station that will not only power its plant, but also supply the national grid.

Zimbabwe is not new to steel, having been one of the biggest steel suppliers during the time of the now collapsed Zimbabwe Iron and Steel Company (ZISCOSTEEL).

ZISCOSTEEL used to contribute to the country’s economy through the export of steel and employed thousands of people in the Midlands province and its collapse came as a big blow.

But the coming in of Tsingshan has brought the country back to its former status as one of the biggest steel produce on the globe.

This, of course, comes with a huge benefit to the country’s economy, which has been ailing for the past two decades largely due to the economic sanctions imposed on the country by Western countries, which made trade with other countries almost impossible.

Tsingshan’s projects are expected to create thousands of jobs directly and millions more in the mining value chain, helping reduce the burden of unemployment.

The company’s projects in lithium will also put Zimbabwe on the map as one of the world’s biggest producers of the now much sought after white gold and a major player in the electric vehicle manufacturing industry.

And that the company plans on investing in a power plant comes as a great relief to the country, which is struggling with its power supply.

The country’s two major sources of energy have had their fair share of challenges and have failed to provide adequate energy, resulting in long hours of load shedding which have adversely affected both businesses and households.

The plant will add to the national power grid making energy available for industry, which is slowly but surely picking up.

The availability of adequate power will help reduce the cost of doing business in the country, which is a major factor for investors. Thus, this will go a long way in attracting investors from across the globe.

The mega deals by Tsingshan will also help improve investor confidence in the country, which for the past two decades has been struggling to attract meaningful investors.

The confidence that Tsingshan has shown in Zimbabwe should be appreciated as it will go a long way in assisting the country achieve its goal of becoming an upper middle income economy by 2030.

For a country which boasts of some of the best human resources in the world, these investments will surely bear fruit and make Vision 2030 a reality.

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