Zim has proper infrastructure for digital economy – World Bank
THE World Bank says Zimbabwe has key fundamentals in place for the development of a digital economy.
Zimbabwe’s cyber driven financial system came under the spotlight at the launch of the country’s digital Economy Diagnostic Report by the World Bank.
The report focuses on the current state of Zimbabwe’s digital ecosystem including its strengths, weaknesses, and opportunities for future growth.
“The report dovetails well with the Government of Zimbabwe’s thrust of modernising and digitising the economy as reflected in the National Development Strategy (2021-2025). We hope that some of the early findings and recommendations from our analysis fed into the design of the Digital Economy pillar of the NDS.
With today’s launch of this report and discussion of its recommendations, we hope to enable stakeholders to contribute further to operationalizing the Digital Economy pillar of the NDS 1,” said Mukami Kariuki, World Bank Zimbabwe Country Manager.
Head E-Government Unit in the Office of the President and Cabinet, Retired Brigadier Charles Wekwete, said the rolling out of close to 200 information centres is part of a wider objective to ensure citizens have access to ICTs for inclusive growth.
“Access of ICT products is government’s top priority and the report has identified key issues and most useful. As part of ethos in NDS1, government consult with NECF. Government has established nearly 200 community information centres to enable individuals to access ict products and POTRAZ is using money from the Universal Services Fund to extend coverage of mobile networks and fixed networks,” said Rtd Brigadier Charles Wekwete – Office of the President and Cabinet E-government Unit Head.
The diagnostic report is a culmination of a collaborative effort between the World Bank Task Team, the Government of Zimbabwe and other stakeholders in the digital economy ecosystem.
The World Bank announces important details in its report on Iraq
A senior expert at the World Bank, Wael Mansour, revealed, on Thursday, important details in his report on Iraq.
Mansour said in a televised interview, “Negative growth of the national product reached 10%, which is one of the worst growth that we see after 2003, and we attribute it to the drop in the oil price, the OPEC Plus agreement, which reduced oil production, and the Corona pandemic that hits many sectors, including services, religious tourism, and others.” .
He pointed out, “a sharp decline in financial resources, and the government has taken harsh measures, including the reduction of all spending outside wages and salaries, and we have seen a sharp decline in public investment and social benefits and all programs that can support growth and reduce poverty and a sharp decrease in it.”
Mansour stressed, “The World Bank is very interested in the factor of growth and sustainable growth, the need for diversification and job creation outside the oil sector, and a basic necessity for women’s participation in the labor market, given that Iraq is among the lowest in the world in this aspect.”
And he indicated that “if Iraq is able to achieve policies and involve women in the labor market 2.
2.5 billion dollars as a result of burning gas associated with the extraction of oil and losses in agriculture and water.”
Mansour continued, “The solutions to Iraq’s problems have become a large structure that accumulates from one government to another, and the solutions are not easy and not immediate, and we are talking about problems in the public sector, electricity and infrastructure, and a very small banking sector that does not exist. And it is not supportive of the public sectors.”
And he noted, “We are aware of the importance of the current government’s white paper, which diagnoses with such accuracy and danger, and rings an alarm bell for the Iraqi economic situation and says that the solution is not immediate, and there must be short-term measures, and all reforms require a pause and a political decision in the first place.”
Mansour concluded, “Not diving into these reforms means recurring problems from one government to another with the low exchange rate of the dollar against the Iraqi dinar,” adding, “We do not set conditions on Iraq, but rather offer advice to increase imports, and with the improvement of the oil price, it is a good look, but it hides 3 risks.” The first is the political and security risk that overthrows all economic recovery and the risk of fluctuations in the oil price and may drop to 50 or 40 dollars per barrel. The other danger is the absence of reform and the failure to implement the white paper, which means a loss of 11 billion dollars for Iraq.
The expert at the World Bank stressed that “reforms affect salaries, electricity, social protection networks and other government-supported aspects,” noting that “the e-government puts Iraq in the back ranks in terms of corruption and management efficiency.” link
Who is blocking foreign investment opportunities in Iraq?
For many years, there has been talk about the need to correct the general economic situation in Iraq, by bringing in foreign investments in order to start rebuilding infrastructure, rebuilding what was destroyed by wars, reviving productive sectors such as industry and agriculture, and the obsolescence of many industrial projects that need to be reconstructed and modernized, in addition to providing job opportunities for young people. For decades, unemployment is the highest in the region .
Despite the Iraqi parliament enacting an investment law No. (13) in 2006, which is the establishment of the National Investment Commission, which is concerned with attracting local and international investments in order to improve the country’s services and infrastructure and create job opportunities for Iraqis, foreign investment opportunities remain shy and almost non-existent. in the country after nearly half a decade after the enactment of the investment Law .
Security and political turmoil
As it is known, the capital is “cowardly” and often searches for a safe and stable environment to enter it, and this matter is difficult to achieve in Iraq due to the successive security and political turmoil that the country is experiencing, which began from the moment after April 2003 until now, as soon as the country graduated From a stifling political crisis to a new security crisis that shakes all corners of the country, and this was what was preventing foreign investments from entering Iraq .
This matter was diagnosed by many observers and specialists in Iraqi economic affairs, including the head of the Parliamentary Committee on Economy and Investment, Representative Ahmed Salim al-Kinani, who considered in a video broadcast on his page on social networking sites (Facebook), that “the political and security instability in Iraq represents an obstacle to attract foreign investment into the country .
Al-Kinani noted that “the Committee on Economy and Investment always emphasizes on the government side the conclusion of international agreements in order to attract investors to Iraq and grant them facilities to expand the field of investment in all services and sectors that serve the public interest .”
Bureaucracy and financial blackmail
The chronic turmoil in the political and security situation in Iraq was not the only one that stifled foreign investment in the country, but the conflict of laws in force, corruption, administrative bureaucracy and financial extortion carried out by armed groups and clans represent another obstacle to investment opportunities, according to what the economist Dr. Sadiq Al-Bahadli .
Al-Bahadli said in a special statement, “Iraq’s lack of a safe investment environment makes the investor and foreign and even local companies unsure of their capital, as there is no law or structure in regards to legislation and instructions that achieve real investment opportunities,” noting that “Investment Law No. (13) for the year 2006, it did not achieve its desired goal, as long as the administrative bureaucracy exists and hinders investment opportunities .”
Written by.. Mohamed Wadha وذ
Al-Bahadli pointed out that “a simple administrative employee can obstruct large investment opportunities, while there is supposed to be a single window through which the investor obtains the investment license, as is the case in the Kurdistan Region of Iraq, they have the president of the region who is responsible for the investment.
The investor comes and goes for his project and during his work is done.” Complete the transaction without blackmailing this investor,” stressing that “in all the governorates of Iraq, some still view the investor as a colonialist and investment is colonialism! This backward mentality does not create investment opportunities for either the local investor or the outside investor !”
However, the economic expert, Dr. Sadiq Al-Bahadli, said in an interview that “the extortion carried out by the clan system and the influential among the ruling political class, political parties and armed groups, outlaws, represent great unforeseen pressures for them, causing delays in Iraq’s obtaining investment opportunities link
Its been said that this would need a three day weekend. Here it is so TPTB jump on it! Please
You know the bankers are hopeful the this weekend is it, they have been on “any minute” for 9 months and would like for business to go back to normal
Source: Dinar Recaps
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