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Business Reporter
STANBIC Bank Zimbabwe has invested $164 million over the past 12 months to fund the working capital needs of the mining industry at a time the economy is battling foreign currency supply gaps.

The figure represents 71 percent of the sector’s working capital requirements, the bank’s corporate and investment banking director, Rhett Groves, said.

“Mining is without doubt the sector that is playing a leading role in the current economic transformation push and ongoing Zimbabwean renaissance. This and other reasons is clearly why we look for ways to continuously demonstrate our commitment to partner the industry,” said Groves.

He noted how the mining industry was a key pillar of the Zimbabwean economy, contributing in excess of 15 percent to nominal GDP; 50 percent to national exports and 60 percent to FDI flows into the country. Groves said such statistics gave impetus for Stanbic Bank to constantly search for ways to leverage its parent company, Standard Bank Group’s expertise, as well as the increasingly positive sentiment Zimbabwe is currently exuding.

“We are immensely excited at the outlook and numerous opportunities out there and we are working tirelessly to turn these opportunities into reality. To you the industry, we commend the leading role you play and the massive efforts demonstrated in employment creation and education via the various corporate social investment programmes in the communities where you operate,” said Groves.

He also commended the mining industry for its contribution to the health sector, as well as infrastructure development in areas such as roads, clean water systems, electricity noting that every facet of life in Zimbabwe continues to be touched by the mining sector.

Stanbic Bank has been sponsoring the Chamber of Mines’ annual general meeting for the last decade. In February this year Stanbic sponsored the two-day mining investment conference held in Harare. The conference was sponsored in conjunction with African Chrome Fields and Liberation Mining, as well as the Ministry of Mining and Mining Development, Minerals and Marketing Corporation of Zimbabwe (MMCZ) and Chamber of Mines.

Stanbic Zimbabwe is a subsidiary of Standard Bank Group, which has signalled its intention to play a pivotal role in championing economic growth in the Southern African country and beyond.