Ray said American investors were now frequently enquiring on opportunities in the country. “With rapid growth in Zimbabwe’s economy for three successive years, my embassy has seen increased enquiries from US businesses interested in exploring new opportunities,” Ray told the Zimbabwe Independent.
“In October 2011 at the ‘Doing Business in Zimbabwe’ forum in Washington, DC, I made a point of saying, ‘Zimbabwe is open for business’ and encouraged US companies to take a closer look. From 2002 through 2011, the annual average nominal value of Zimbabwe’s exports to the US was US$75 million, and annual imports from the US averaged $64 million. Trade indicators show significant scope for growth in this bilateral trade.”
Ray said regional and international economic integration was key for shared growth and prosperity.
“In three weeks, the US will celebrate 236 years of independence. No matter how much we Americans cherish our independence, we know that our prosperity depends on an increasingly interconnected global economy,” he said.
“Zimbabweans have learned the same lesson. Even during the days of the Zim dollar and high tariff barriers, Zimbabwe could not completely insulate itself from external economic forces. Today, with a more open trade regime and the multi currency arrangement, Zimbabweans are more (immediately) affected than ever before by the ups and downs of the world’s economy,” Ray said.
“Even though the US economy is more than 1 000 times larger than Zimbabwe’s, citizens of both countries must each day face the reality of economic interdependence. Recent lowering of expectations for economic growth in Europe, for example, has reduced confidence in the US.
“Similarly, reduced global demand for cotton has caused the market price to slump, and that is bad news for cotton growers in Zimbabwe,” said Ray.
Ray said growing integration and interdependence now posed a challenge to national leaders.
“The reality of interdependence creates a challenge for national leaders across the globe. Their responses to that challenge vary according to their individual outlook, the expectations of their people, and the nature of their ties to other countries. A central goal of American foreign policy is to promote international trade, encourage cross-border investment, and help build a global economy that is open, free, transparent and fair,” he said.
Ray said more trade and investment between the US and Zimbabwe would help both countries.
— Staff Writer.