In his welcome remarks, the firm’s group CEO Kenias Mafukidze applauded the business delegates for having endured the harsh economic climate at a time when the country’s economy was on the wane.
“Prime Minister (Morgan Tsvangirai), before you are sons and daughters of this country who braved the decade of decline (1998-2008) and soldiered on resolutely to ensure the country remains standing. Even as we speak, the economy remains highly resilient with a cash economy that is reeling from liquidity constraints. These same gentlemen and ladies, your national CEOs are still soldiering on and confident of playing a part for a better Zimbabwe against all odds,” said Mafukidze.
“Over the last 24 months we have witnessed the emergency of a consensus within Zimbabwe. A consensus that states that as Zimbabweans, we need to shift our physic from hand to mouth short term survivals tactics to strategic long term existence,” he said.
Mafukidze said there is need for people to utilise resources wisely and efficiently.
“This thinking, Prime Minister is an off-shoot of the direction that we received from the medium term plan led by Tapiwa Mashakada for which we are grateful. As Zimbabweans, there is an increasing resonance around the realisation that we need to make better utilisation of the assets around us namely: world-renowned human capital/underground resources/high literacy rates to mention a few. The reason for a stuttering economy despite all the above God given resources has its roots in a lack of a clear vision or target to rally our fellow citizens. There is dire need to rally the citizens of this country around clear measurable growth targets and destinations,” he said.
He said the 2040 target of a $100 billion economy will only be achieved if all sectors work collectively and if the economy grows by 10% for the next 30 years.
“The proposal, is a request/proposal that given the existing public support and consensus, government officially adopts the target of a $100 billion economy by 2040. This target requires that we grow the economy by 10% for the next three decades. If we can work together as government, business and labour, this target is easily achievable. Why $100 billion?: The answer lies in the wholesale uplifting of lives to monumentally unprecedented proportions such as creation of two-million jobs, increasing power-generation to 20 000MGW and a tenfold increase in per capital GDP to around $7 000 per annum by 2040,” he said.
“This 2012 CEO Africa Roundtable meeting, the Business Council of Zimbabwe (BCZ) meeting of 2011 in Nyanga and other similar meetings before it have resolved to tackle head on a number of imperatives in order to make tangible steps towards achievement of $100 billion economy:
lAdoption and finalisation of a clear national vision incorporating targeting a $100 billion economy by 2040;
lIncrease in confidence through enshrining of dignity of work and ethics. We also need to deal with legacy issues: Eroded pensions/unpaid deposits with banking institutions in FCAs and unconverted Zimbabwe dollar balances. We recommend a commission to look at dealing and concluding these matters;
lWe need to mobilise resources for building infrastructure and financing of agriculture. We must encourage a serious saving culture in the country. A $100 billion target needs us to mobilise at least $20 billion;
lWe need to constitutionalise the preservation of the value of our currency;
lWe need to put emphasise upon increased productivity. Productivity is about doing more with less. The culture of entitlement is a cancer we must cut off from the fabric of our society and restore the dignity of work. This dictates that we add value to our produce;
lLastly, the CEOs along with BCZ have implored for execution and action. Our destination lies not in the length of our words, but in the indisputable gravity and weight of our actions.
“This is a call that we can come together and shape our destiny. We want to look down from the heavens 100 years to this decade as the generation that resolved to put Zimbabwe back on the properity path. We want to look back to this day as the day on which we turn the arch of history towards prosperity. We want our great grandchildren to stand on our shoulders and not have us standing on their shoulders by mortgaging their heritage,” he said. “A $100 billion dollar economy is not a mirage and a futuristic target we hope never to live to prove. The $100 billion dollar call is a commitment to a 10% growth path from today starting from this year: We herein invite government to partner business in formulating a recovery path for a better Zimbabwe.”
Guests who attended the function included: Tsvangirai, Deputy Prime Minister Arthur Mutambara; economic planning and investment promotion minister Tapiwa Mashakada; deputy information and publicity minister Murisi Zwizwai; tourism minister Walter Mzembi; ZNCC president Oswald Binha; Business Council of Zimbabwe president David Govere; Insurance Institute of Zimbabwe president Simon Chapereka and chief secretary in the Prime Minister’s office Ian Makone, among others.