CHINA sank at least $46,5 million in Foreign Direct Investment to Zimbabwe between January and November 2015 with indications that the figure will balloon this year following the signing of various deals during President Xi Jinping’s recent visit. Zimbabwe adopted the Look East Policy more than a decade ago and over the past few years, China has emerged as the country’s biggest investor. According to information obtained from the Chinese Embassy in Harare last week, nearly $50 million in FDI had been pumped into the country’s economy as of November 2015.
“From January to November 2015, Zimbabwe received US$46,53 million from China in FDI,” said an official from the Chinese embassy’s department of trade.
The FDI was mainly driven by mining, infrastructure development, tourism and services. lnvestors have been showing interest in energy and mining. Between 1980 and 2013, the country received more than $1,8 billion in FDI.
Statistics from the Zimbabwe Investment Authority revealed that China is the country’s biggest investor as it accounted for 74 percent of the FDI during the first half of 2015. Two years ago, ZIA approved $929m of FDI with more than half of it coming from China. China has invested millions of dollars in the country’s various sectors.
Among them is the Harare water systems upgrade, the Kariba South extension project which is expected to add 300 mega watts to the national grid on completion and the Victoria Fall International Airport expansion.
According to 2013 trade statistics, the country’s exports to the Asian giant stood at $688 million, while China’s exports to the country were at $414 million.
Last week, Macro-Economic and Investment Promotion permanent secretary, Dr Desire Sibanda told our Harare Bureau that there are indications that the figure will rise this year following the signing of various agreements over the past year.
“With the introduction of the Special Economic Zones, China is poised to be our main investment destination and results are there for all to see,” he said.