Review interest rates downwards, banks told

By Kenias Chivuzhe

GOVERNMENT has pledged increased commitment to supporting the revival and growth of the local industry by incentivising productivity and promoting local procurement policies.

This was said by Finance and Economic Development Minister Professor Mthuli Ncube this Saturday when he visited four companies in Manicaland province; Mega Market, Quest Motor Company, Willowton and Kenrose Filters as part of a process to fine-tune the national budget to increase support towards the revival and growth of the local industry.

Speaking to ZBC News after the tour Professor Ncube said the government is working towards incentivising local production, stressing the need to promote local procurement.

“If these four companies are supported through policies and government actions there will be marked positive development. We need to support the local industry and this visit is part of a process to fine-tune our policies to achieve industrial growth. 

“We need to promote the buy Zimbabwe mantra and support our local value chains industry. We are looking at incentivising local production for our goods and services to be more attractive. Our policy will be changing to support the domestication of local value chains.” 

Minister Ncube also challenged the banking sector to review their interest rates in line with the stability obtaining in the economy.

“There is need for the banking sector to respond to the stability being recorded in the economy by reviewing down high-interest rates. The current rates are a reflection of delayed reaction to the stability of the currency by the banking sector.”

Manicaland Minister of State for Provincial Affairs and Devolution Dr Ellen Gwaradzimba said signs of increased industrial growth are encouraging.

“This trip has given the Minister of Finance a chance to understand the challenges facing the local industry. We are happy that he has promised to give us support. “

Managing Director at one of the toured companies Muhammad Shiraan Ahmed said the current economic stability has had a positive impact towards the growth of the local industry.

“The auction system has assisted to stabilise the economy and improve the availability of foreign currency. We are now seeing a stable exchange rate. It’s a positive development for business. We hope that the exchange rate stability will continue on a positive trajectory.”

The Second Republic has scored economic milestones through the Transitional Stabilisation Programme (TSP) which include currency stability which is crucial for investment and business growth.

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