Zimbabwean President Emmerson Mnangagwa has extended a nationwide lockdown meant to control the spread of coronavirus, though the restrictions will be reviewed every two weeks.
In a live broadcast on Saturday, Mnangagwa said the measure would remain in place "for an indefinite period", adding that "the country needs to ease out of the lockdown in a strategic and gradual manner"
President Emmerson Mnangagwa has extended the national lockdown by a further 14 days saying the country has not met any of the conditions set by the World Health Organisation. The lockdown will now end on the 3rd of May.
Asof 18th April 2020, Zimbabwe has 24 confirmed cases of COVID-19, the disease caused by the coronavirus, and three deaths.
Throughout the chaotic ups and downs of Zimbabwe’s economic crisis, tourism remained a reliable source of income, as foreign tourists flocked to the country’s natural wonders. According to the Zimbabwe Tourism Authority, 2.5 million tourists generated an estimated US$1 billion in revenue in 2018. While tourism dropped by 11% in 2019, the country remained one of the top tourist destinations in Africa, attracting visitors from all over the world.
Now, the coronavirus pandemic threatens to topple another pillar of the national economy.
With Zimbabwe’s health-care sector crippled by a strike by doctors and nurses, underfunding and years of general neglect, fears are growing that Covid-19 will hit the troubled country very hard.
Already, the disease — confirmed in the country just two weeks ago — has claimed its first victim: Zimbabwean broadcaster Zororo Makamba. At the time of publication, the number of confirmed cases had reached eight, from 233 tests.
Zimbabwe’s health-care sector is, indeed, a mess. It was paralysed for more than four months last year when doctors and nurses went on strike over wages. They only returned to work in January, after Zimbabwean billionaire Strive Masiyiwa set up a fund to cover subsistence and transport costs. The telecoms tycoon stepped in again to head off a strike this week, offering financial incentives, insurance and protective clothing to safeguard medical workers from the coronavirus.
Drugs are in short supply, and depleted state coffers mean the government is unable to buy supplies for state medical facilities.
The shambolic state of the country’s health-care system was captured in a report by UN human rights expert Hilal Elver, who visited Zimbabwe in November. She found that patients often travel 200km north of Harare to mission hospitals such as Karanda to seek health care.
ON 30TH MARCH 2020 - President Emmerson Mnangagwa declared a 21-day “total” lockdown curtailing movement within the country, shutting most shops and suspending flights in and out of Zimbabwe Police mounted checkpoints on routes leading to Harare's central business district, stopping cars and turning away pedestrians who had no authorisation to be in the area. Elsewhere truckloads of metropolitan and national police armed with batons were on patrol, ordering people back to their homes.
Oil companies in Zimbabwe will from Tuesday buy US$ to import fuel on the interbank market after the central bank ended the1:1 peg to the dollar that the firms were using, the bank said, a move that could see the price of fuel going up.
Zimbabwe will subsidise public transport and cut fuel duties by more than half as it tries to ease the impact of rampant inflation on its poorest citizens, according to Finance Secretary George Guvamatanga. The support will cost about US$8m (about at ZAR115m) a month.
Not strictly news but we have been asked to recommend somewhere to eat in Harare.
For a top notch quality dining experience, for which one of course pay's - look no futher than either Emmanuel's in Baines Avenue or Victoria 22 (in the road of the same name).
But why eat European in Africa? Visit Nambitha and celebrate African food, from jollof rice to roadrunner, rump-bones, stewed goat, oxtail, maguru and matumbu and zvinyenze. No 7 Falmoth Road,Alex Park.
Ok, if its STEAK you want, try Chop Chop, been running for 2 years this steak house is at junction of 5th Street / Herbert Chitepo.
For Zimababwean food, try Gava's at Belgravia Sports Club. But be aware it has been known on occassion to disappoint!
For an intermediate cost establishment try Paula's at 314 Samora Machel Ave, Eastlea.
For a business lunch try Fishmonger at 50 East Road in Avondale.
Zimbabwe will supply the interbank foreign exchange market with US$500million today as its tries to resuscitate a currency trading system implemented in February that’s been plagued by a lack of liquidity.
In February the central bank created the interbank market and said its quasi-currency, known as RTGS, would no longer be pegged to the dollar but would be allowed to trade at fair value on the market.
In February, Finance Minister Mthuli Ncube called time on bond notes in favour of the RTGS dollar and established a managed (local) interbank floating foreign currency market. HOWEVER, in spite of that the list of businesses moving towards the US dollar includes some of Zimbabwe’s corporate giants. Internet service provider Zol — controlled by Econet Wireless Zimbabwe — charges US$ prices for its home and office internet services. Retailers such as OK Zimbabwe, TM Supermarkets, Pick n Pay and Spar, as well as fast-food franchise KFC, are charging US$, and tyre retailers advertise their products in US$ currency. Even state-owned enterprises have joined the bandwagon. For example, TelOne, a government-owned fixed-line telephone operator, is charging US$ for its data services.
It’s as if the economy has "silently dollarised".
Why? The problem is that most Zimbabweans have very little faith in the central bank as the government’s lack of restraint in running the currency printing press and its creation of all manner of monetary instruments have done it no favours.
After more than a decade in limbo, beef farmers are back in business. Zimbabwe's famed beef industry, which collapsed in the 2000s following outbreaks of foot-and-mouth disease, is now rebounding. Global beef exports resumed in 2017, 10 years after they slowed to a crawl when the country's economy tumbled. In addition to the foot-and-mouth disease, the beef industry had been hit by crippling economic sanctions imposed on the country by Western nations, which contributed to hyperinflation, huge foreign debts and obsolete transport fleets. Mismanagement of livestock farms worsened the situation. Government is now seeking to revive the nation's most strategic asset by actively wooing investors. The country's top commercial farmers, whose herds of livestock were decimated, are slowly returning. A joint US$48 million cash injection by private investors from Rwanda, Switzerland and the United Arab Emirates is revving up the beef industry, which in 2018 also benefitted from a US$130 million investment partnership deal between Zimbabwe's state-owned beef processing firm, the CSC, which is Zimbabwe's foremost beef processing agency, and the UK-based company Boustead Beef, an international beef processing company.
Mining giant Anglo American on Thursday opened a US$62-million platinum smelter in Zimbabwe, the country's first such refinery, as President Emmerson Mnangagwa vowed to boost the country's valuable platinum sector. Three miners - Anglo-American Platinum, Impala Platinum and Aquarius Platinum - operate in Zimbabwe, which has the second largest platinum deposits in Africa.