Isdore Guvamombe in Isle of Man, United Kingdom
The Government has started working on a Diaspora Strategy aimed at creating ease access, cooperation and a conducive investment environment for thousands of Zimbabweans living abroad, as the country’s reengagement process goes into overdrive.
Addressing members of the country’s Diaspora community here yesterday, Zimbabwe Tourism Authority Acting Chief Executive Mrs Rita Likukuma said the Diaspora Strategy, which seeks to among other things, make it easy for Diasporans to access home and invest, while ring-fencing their investments, will unlock value from Zimbabweans living abroad.
“There is strong thinking and realisation that Zimbabwe cannot turn around its economy and without the participation of its huge diaspora community. We want the Diaspora community to easily visit home and invest.
“There has been realization that Zimbabwe cannot easily achieve Vision 2030 that of creating an upper middle class economy without the full participation of its Diaspora community.
“We have therefore, started working on a Diaspora Strategy to enable us and our people living abroad to work together, trusting each other,’’ she said.
Mrs Likukuma said the Government was keen on making sure that all investment by Diasporans have special protection, to avoid cases of cheating that are rampant.
“We are aware of how some people who have tried to invest back home have ended up being cheated and losing everything or part of their investment.
“In that strategy is the need to protect investments of our Diaspora Community, and we might float a bond to ring-fence those investments because we are aware of many people having been cheated of their investments in the past,’’ she said.
Mrs Likukuma said although there were problems back home, the Government was working flat out for solutions and that the Diaspora community should tap into the problems and become part of the solution.
“All problems that you here about back home can be solved if we work together. For example, we are experiencing power shortages back home and it is time for our Diaspora community to invest into the energy sector and make money out of it.
“Take advantage of those gaps and invest otherwise investments will be taken by others, by foreigners, even’’ she said much to applause.