Story by Stanley James, Business Editor
The African Development Bank (AfDB) has projected Zimbabwe’s economic growth forecast for this year at above 3% and within the range of Southern African economies.
Growth projections contained in the African Economic Outlook Report released at the AfDB annual meetings in Egypt show that Zimbabwe’s economy is anticipated to expand by 3,2% against a regional projection of 2,7%.
The AfDB forecast falls below treasury’s projection of above four percent growth rate, spurred by increased production in mining and agricultural sectors, and more activity in the construction sector.
The AfDB has however cited power outages and financial uncertainties among factors that will slow down economic growth in Southern Africa.
Zimbabwe has of late been exposed to local and external financial shocks cited the AfDB, while its largest trading partner South Africa is reeling under power supply challenges.
The AfDB is calling on Southern Africa economies to focus more on social safety nets, ease poverty and improve overall living conditions of the people.
The AfDB, whose President Dr Anikumwi Adesina is the champion of Zimbabwe’s external debt – arrears clearance strategy, has also revealed that illegal sanctions imposed by the United States and its allies are hurting the economy and limiting the country’s capacity to implement socio-economic development programmes.