Tuesday, October 1, 2019

ED Delivers an Uninspiring State of the Nation Address: Highlights

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HIGHLIGHTS OF MNANGAGWA’S SONA
  • Cash shortages – Government is conducting a gradual removal of arbitrage opportunities created through multi-tier pricing of goods by retailers.
  • US$51 million set aside for the supply of various agricultural machinery under Command Agriculture.
  • Government also working on a programme to avail animal dipping chemicals to improve general animal husbandry
  • US$2.7 million grant from India for the upgrading of technology centers throughout the country.
  • Zimbabwe recognized by the World Bank as having made considerable regulatory improvement in five areas measured on the ease and cost of doing business.
  • ZESA to be restructured to eliminate corruption and improve efficiency
  • Companies with own foreign currency free to procure own fuel through registered oil companies
  • Government to roll out an electronic national fuel monitoring system to curb malpractices
  • Public Enterprise Reforms
  • GMB to demerge into strategic grain reserves and silo food industries
  • National Railways of Zimbabwe (NRZ ) to be recapitalized to the tune of US$220 million
  • New partnership programmes for Cold Storage Commission
  • NetOne and TelOne to be privatized
  • Partial privatization for Allied Timbers, POSB, ZUPCO, AgriBank and the IDBZ.
LEGISLATIVE AGENDA
The Second Session of the Ninth Parliament is expected to continue with the re-alignment of various laws to the constitution. Some of the laws and bills under consideration include:
  • The High Court Act, Labour Court Act, Magistrates Court Act, Police Act, the Public Finance Management Bill, Insurance and Pensions Act, Securities and Exchange Commission Bill, Mines and Minerals Amendment bill and the Gold Trade Act.
  • The Precious Stones Act will be realigned to improve competitiveness of the local mining industry.
  •  The Petroleum Act is expected to pave way for the creation of an enabling environment for the exploration of natural gas and mineral oil.
  • The Electricity Act will see imposition of stiffer penalties for vandalism.
  • Cyber Crime and Cyber Security Bill, Data Protection and the Electronic Transactions Bill will regulate the technology environment in order to protect users.
  • Pension and Provident Funds Bill to ensure compliance with international standards and protect policy holders and pensioners.
  • Medical Aid Societies Bill to facilitate the creation of a  Medical Aid Society Regulatory authority in order to protect members.
  • Child Justice bill, Sexual Offences Bill and the Prisons and Correctional Services Bill are also expected to be tabled before Parliament during the Second Session