SADC approves US$8.5 reconstruction plan for Zimbabwe

SA foreign minister Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma said that the plan presented by the Zimbabwean unity government to SADC leadrs at a SADC summit here included US$2 billion in short term aid to kickstart the collapsed economy.

This would comprise US$1 billion in loans and another US$1 billion in aid.

She stressed though that SADC governments would not raise most of the money themselves.

They would try to mobilise it from international donors and international financial institutions.

She said the summit had agreed that the SADC governments would each decide over the next weeks what rthey could afford to give.

The minister said SA was ready to provide credit lines as well as some project fiance. The International Development Corporation (IDCY and Development Bank of Southern Africa (DBSA) would be asked to see if there were bankable projects in the Zimbabwe plan they could finance.

Ousted Malagasy President Marc Ravalolomana arrived at the summit today and was expected to plead with the leaders to reinstall him. He was ousted by the army two weeks ago and replaced by Andry Rajoelina.

Officials said it was unlikely that SADC. Would reinstate him because that would probably require military force.

But it is likely the leaders will suspend Madagascar from SADC as a result of the coup. It would be the first SADC nation to be suspended from the organisation.