HomeNewsBiti to present mid-term review on Monday

Biti to present mid-term review on Monday

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FINANCE minister Tendai Biti will on Monday present the Mid-Term Fiscal Policy statement after initially postponing the economic review due to campaigning ahead of the next election.

Report by Acting Business Editor

Biti told NewsDay yesterday that Treasury had set the date to announce a report on the economic performance in the first six months of the year.

This is the second time in just over a week that the Finance minister has postponed the presentation due to the forthcoming polls.

Zimbabwe’s year-on-year inflation rate for the month of June 2013 as measured by the all items Consumer Price Index stood at 1,87% shedding 0,33 percentage points on the May 2013 rate of 2,2%.

The mid-term policy will probably be the last for the inclusive government formed in 2009 after a contested presidential runoff poll in 2008. Already Cabinet meetings have been suspended as the country gears for the next election set for July 31.

The policy statement, which reviews the current budget, comes at a time the economy has contracted by an estimated 3% due to uncertainties surrounding the forthcoming polls.

The local manufacturing sector is also struggling to remain afloat due to biting liquidity constraints and stiff competition.

Last month, Biti said the proclamation of the elections date by President Robert Mugabe had left Treasury back-footed and incapable of making any policy interventions. The minister said the mid-term fiscal policy would not prescribe any new review measures, but recommended the post-election government to maintain the current macro-economic stability.

Meanwhile, the mid-term fiscal policy statement was expected to be announced during the same week with Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe governor Gideon Gono’s Monetary Policy Statement (MPS). The MPS is expected to present an update on the capitalisation of the financial services sector following an upward revision of capital levels last August.

The central bank’s statement is also expected to tackle issues related to bank charges amid a public outcry over service charges.

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