Search

 

Cablegate: Still Otherworldly Economic Policy

This record is a partial extract of the original cable. The full text of the original cable is not available.

UNCLAS HARARE 001593

SIPDIS

STATE FOR AF/S and AF/EX
NSC FOR SENIOR AFRICA DIRECTOR JFRAZER
USDOC FOR 2037 DIEMOND
PASS USTR FLORIZELLE LISER
STATE PASS USAID FOR MARJORIE COPSON

E. O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: ECON EINV PGOV ZI
SUBJECT: Still Otherworldly Economic Policy

1. Summary: Past-week events affirm the GOZ is still
committed to self-destructive economic policies. We
observe no GOZ reckoning of the economy's sorry state.
End Summary.

New Farm/Conservancy Acquisitions
---------------------------------
2. Even while the so-called Utete Commission is
supposedly producing a roadmap to straighten out land
reform, the chaotic process lurches forward. The GOZ
continues to list new properties for acquisition. Many
new listings are nature conservancies, which hold zero
potential for crop farming. Meanwhile, political elites
are scurrying to hide their multiple acquisitions behind
relatives, protecting themselves from imposition of a one
man/one farm policy.

Banknote Shortage
-----------------
3. The Government continues to scapegoat any convenient
group for its inflation-driven banknote shortage.
Yesterday, the official press fingered Asian business
owners. The GOZ refuses to own up to the effects of
inflation on the M1 supply and print larger bills.
Instead, the Government wastes time and money producing
useless new travelers checks in larger denominations with
ridiculous fanfare. Checks were the lead story in
yesterday's Herald and subject of two - count `em -
Herald commentaries today, insisting that checks are
"ushering in a new era in the financial sector."

Daft Propaganda
---------------
4. Yesterday's Herald also carried an article: "Zimbabwe
Maintains Glitter as Investment Destination." The piece
rejoices: "The current trend indicates that Zimbabwe is
one country which will produce positive figures this
year." FDI has declined from US$ 444 to 3 million in six
years.

Interest Rate Debate
--------------------
5. President Mugabe and other GOZ thinkers still argue
that the GOZ needs to reduce interest rates to spur
growth. With real rates currently 300-percent negative
and inflation spiraling out of control, this is economic
heresy. Zimbabweans' best investment remains borrowing
and converting to forex.

Please Don't Pay Us
-------------------
6. Exporters tell us they are urging foreign customers to
withhold payment. At present, half of export revenue
must be exchanged with the Reserve Bank at Z$824:US$1,
twenty percent of the Z$4200:US$1 market rate. In hope
the GOZ will boost this unreasonable official rate (it
increased from Z$55 to 824:US$1 in February), exporters
often stupefy customers by insisting that they delay
payment.

Comment
-------
7. As we have stated in the past, we do not believe the
GOZ will embark on genuine economic reform until it comes
to terms with the mass impoverishment its policies have
wrought. Many higher-ups admit to us privately that the
Government is destroying the economy, but almost none are
willing to confront Mugabe or go public.

Whitehead

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
World Headlines

 


UN: Pope's Visit To Iraq "A Symbol Of Hope"

The visit by Pope Francis to the northern Iraqi city of Mosul at the weekend will be a symbol of hope and an opportunity to join forces for peace and unity, the UN cultural agency, UNESCO, said on Thursday, ahead of his touchdown in the capital, Baghdad... More>>

Myanmar: Military Must Stop Murdering And Jailing Protestors – Bachelet

UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Michelle Bachelet on Thursday said security forces in Myanmar must “halt their vicious crackdown on peaceful protestors,” following another day of deadly violence across the country on Wednesday... More>>

Syria: Economic Decline, Rising Hunger And Surging Humanitarian Needs

Syria’s fragile economy has “suffered multiple shocks” over the past 18 months, with its currency plummeting and joblessness swelling as people struggle to cover their basic needs, the UN Emergency Relief Coordinator told the Security Council ... More>>


Focus On: UN SDGs


Podcast: A UN Top Official’s Inspiring Journey To Leadership

UN Under-Secretary for Global Communications Melissa Fleming speaks to Agnes Kalibata, the Special Envoy to the 2021 Food Systems Summit, about her journey as a woman leader – from growing up as a Rwandan refugee in Uganda to becoming Rwanda’s Minister of Agriculture and now a top official at the United Nations... More>>

UNFCCC: Greater Climate Ambition Urged As Initial NDC Synthesis Report Is Published

UN Climate Change today published the Initial NDC Synthesis Report, showing nations must redouble efforts and submit stronger, more ambitious national climate action plans in 2021 if they’re to achieve the Paris Agreement goal of limiting global temperature rise by 2°C—ideally 1.5°C—by the end of the century... More>>


2021: Critical Year To ‘reset Our Relationship With Nature’ – UN Chief

During this time of “crisis and fragility”, the UN chief told the United Nations Environment Assembly on Monday that human well-being and prosperity can be vastly improved by prioritizing nature-based solutions. Painting a picture of the turmoil ... More>>