HomeOpinion & AnalysisIn Full: Fourteenth post cabinet briefing: May 31, 2022

In Full: Fourteenth post cabinet briefing: May 31, 2022

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  • ZIMBABWE’S RESPONSE TO THE COVID-19 PANDEMIC AND REPORT ON THE PROCUREMENT AND ROLLOUT OF VACCINES

Cabinet considered Zimbabwe’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic, and the report on the procurement and roll-out of vaccines, which was presented by the Vice President and Minister of Health and Child Care, Honourable C.G.D.N. Chiwenga.

Cabinet wishes to inform the nation that as at the 29th of May, 2022, Zimbabwe’s cumulative COVID-19 positive cases had reached 252 156, with 243 992 recoveries. The recovery rate was 97%, with 2 663 active cases recorded. The overall number of new cases increased slightly during the week, with 1 454 cases recorded, compared to 1 440 the previous week. An average of 208 new cases was reported per day, compared to 206 cases the previous week.

Provinces are now focussing on strengthening routine vaccination activities in various static health facilities with the aim of pushing the national vaccination coverage to 70%. In the same vein, all provinces are closely monitoring vaccination coverage in secondary schools to ensure that those that reach 70% can resume sporting activities, while those that have not reached this coverage are encouraged to do so.

The cumulative numbers of vaccinations since the outbreak of the pandemic in 2020 have now reached 6 223 915 for the first dose, 4 524 556 for the second dose, and 810 605 for the third dose. The public is urged to continue seeking vaccination.

  • EXEMPTION OF HWANGE ELECTRICITY COMPANY (HESCO) TO ENTER INTO LONG-TERM COAL SUPPLY AGREEMENTS UNDER THE HWANGE EXPANSION POWER PROJECT

Cabinet considered and approved the exemption of Hwange Electricity Supply Company (HESCO) from entering into long term coal supply agreements under the Hwange Expansion Power Project as presented by the Honourable Vice President and Minister of Health and Child Care, Dr C.G.D.N. Chiwenga.

The nation is informed that Government embarked on various infrastructural projects to underpin the transformation of the country’s productive capacities. One such landmark project is the Hwange Expansion Power Project, which is expected to significantly contribute towards the   re-vitalization of the agricultural, industrial, manufacturing and mining sectors. On completion, the project will contribute an additional 600 MW to the national grid.

  • FINAL REPORT ON ZIMBABWE’S PARTICIPATION AT EXPO 2020 DUBAI: 1 OCTOBER 2021 – 31 MARCH 2022

Cabinet received the Final Report on Zimbabwe’s participation at Expo 2020 Dubai, held from 1 October 2021 to 31 March 2022, as presented by the Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Trade, Honourable Fredrick Shava.

The nation is informed that Zimbabwe was one of the 192 countries that participated at Expo 2020 Dubai, where it showcased its unique opportunities in trade and investment, its distinct cultural heritage, socio-economic activities such as mining, tourism, agriculture, health, education, arts and culture among others.

The country was also promoting the engagement and re-engagement Agenda and unpacking the country’s Vision 2030. Feedback indicates that the overall objectives were met through the main exhibition and complementary events. However, key stakeholders are undertaking an appraisal of the country’s participation at the Expo.

Regarding the Invest, Trade and Visit Zimbabwe drive, a lot of enquiries were received during the period. A number of Joint Venture Agreements were signed during the Expo.

Two Diaspora engagements were held during the period. The first one was attended by the Vice President and Minister of Health and Child Care, Honourable C.G.D.N. Chiwenga, while the second one was graced by His Excellency, the President.

Very successful engagements were conducted during both forums, where the diaspora community expressed interest in investing in various sectors of the economy. Zimbabwe’s “National Day” was held on 14 March 2022, and was dedicated to celebrating Zimbabwe as a nation.

  • TOURISM SATELLITE ACCOUNTING FINDINGS AND POLICY IMPLICATIONS

Cabinet received a report on the Tourism Accounting Findings and Policy Implications as presented by the Minister of Youth, Sport, Arts and Recreation, Honourable Kirsty Coventry, as the Acting Minister of Environment, Climate, Tourism and Hospitality Industry.

Cabinet wishes to inform the nation that in line with the National Development Strategy, (NDS 1 2021-2025), Government undertook to develop the Tourism Satellite Account (TSA), in order to improve the accounting of the performance of the Tourism Sector.

A Technical Working group led by the Zimbabwe National Statistical Agency (ZIMSTAT) produced the TSA. The TSA is an internationally adopted statistical tool for the measurement of tourism’s contribution to the Gross Domestic Product (GDP), trade and employment in an economy.

The nation is informed that the major findings of TSA are as follows;

  1. that currently tourism is contributing US$ 1 964 592 880 (4.5%) to GDP. There is need to triple growth in the sector to reach the target of a US$5 billion tourism economy by 2025;
  2. that the tourism sector directly employed 99 141 people in 2018;
  3. that Domestic tourism contributed US$765 724 073 compared to US$1 198 868 807 inbound tourism expenditure and should be supported;
  4. that collaboration among Government Agencies involved in collection of tourism statistics will be strengthened by utilization of digital platforms and collaboration will be enhanced among the Zimbabwe Tourism Authority, the Department of Immigration and other State actors.
  • REPORT ON HIS EXCELLENCY THE PRESIDENT’S PARTICIPATION AT THE 2022 WORLD ECONOMIC FORUM: DAVOS, SWITZERLAND

The Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Trade, Honourable Dr Frederick Shava, presented the Report on His Excellency the President’s Participation at the 2022 World Economic Forum, which was held in Davos from 24 to 26 May, 2022.

Cabinet would like to highlight that His Excellency the President’s presence and active participation in various high-level events at the Forum, as well as the calibre of private and public sector leaders the President was able to interact with, significantly boosted Zimbabwe’s engagement and re-engagement drive and helped in conveying an accurate picture of developments in Zimbabwe. All in all, His Excellency the President participated in various events, including the following:

  • a private engagement with the Founder and Executive Chairman of the World Economic Forum, Professor Klaus Schwab;
  • two breakfast interactive session with world leaders, business executives and civil society;
  • two closed-session “informal gatherings of world economic leaders” (IGWEL);
  • a strategy session on Africa’s economic outlook; and
  • a workshop focused on attracting new investment and services markets in Africa.

His Excellency the President co-chaired two sessions and was also given the honour of delivering the opening remarks in a third session. On the sidelines of his busy World Economic Forum schedule, the President found time to meet senior executives of two Swiss companies with operations in Zimbabwe, namely: Holcim-Larfage, global cement and other construction materials manufacturer; and Sygenta Agri-chemicals.

In keeping with his tradition wherever he travels, His Excellency the President traveled to Zurich where he met Zimbabweans in the diaspora, including those based in Germany, Poland and the United Kingdom.

6.0   REPORT ON THE VISIT BY THE VICE PRESIDENT AND MINISTER OF HEALTH AND CHILD CARE TO THE REPUBLIC OF INDONESIA: 15 – 21 MAY, 2022

Cabinet received and adopted the Report on the Visit to the Republic of Indonesia undertaken by the Vice President and Minister of Health and Child Care, Honourable Dr C.G.D.N. Chiwenga, to attend the 2022 Sector Ministers’ Meeting on Sanitation and Water for All.

The Vice President and Minister Health and Child Care, Honourable Dr C.G.D.N. Chiwenga delivered the Meeting’s Key Note Address, highlighting the challenges brought about by the COVID-19 pandemic, economic downturn and climate change. The 2022 Sector Ministers’ Meeting on Sanitation and Water for All agreed on the need for urgent action on the following, among others:

  • that political leadership across the different branches of Government should prioritise water and sanitation within national, regional and global agendas, as part of achieving overall social and economic development;
  • that support be provided to foster stronger enabling environments, which contribute to recovery as well as expanded and improved access to water, sanitation and hygiene as well as resilience and financial attractiveness and efficiency;
  • that innovative ways should be pursued to secure resources to cover the costs of the COVID-19 pandemic, while kick-starting economic recovery and a green economy, and simultaneously supporting increased investment in water and sanitation to mitigate and adapt to the impacts of climate change; and
  • that accountability is put at the centre for accelerating sustained progress, strengthening collaboration, reinforcing inclusive participation and building resilience, especially through sharing information and ensuring transparency to meet commitments and obligations.

Furthermore, the Bio Farma pharmaceutical company representatives are expected to visit Zimbabwe and explore possibilities of signing a Memorandum of Understanding to establish a joint venture with a Zimbabwean State-owned company to manufacture vaccines. In addition, PT LEN of Indonesia will explore investment opportunities in the renewable energy and rail signaling systems, while PT Pindad will explore partnerships with authorities in the defence industry.

  • REPORT ON THE AFRICAN UNION 16TH EXTRAORDINARY SUMMIT ON TERRORISM AND CONSTITUTIONAL CHANGES OF GOVERNMENT 

The Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Trade, Honourable F. Shava, presented the Report on the 16th Extraordinary Summit on Terrorism and Unconstitutional Changes of Government which was held in Malabo, Equatorial Guinea on 28 May, 2022. Cabinet adopted the Report.

The Summit which was held under the theme “Robust Response, Democracy and Collective Security”, provided the proper platform for AU Heads of State and Government to deliberate on the adoption of timeous strategic interventions to address the two interrelated vices of terrorism and unconstitutional changes of Government, which are at the core of complex political and socio-economic challenges bedeviling the continent.

In particular, the efforts of the AU, the Regional Economic Communities (RECs), and individual Member States to address the threat of terrorism and vulnerability of African States were highlighted. The Summit concluded that there should be adherence to the AU principles, norms and shared values.

Cabinet informs the nation that two major documents were produced by the Extraordinary Summit, namely: the Malabo Declaration; and Decisions on Terrorism and Unconstitutional Changes of Government. On Terrorism, the Declaration, among others, resolved as follows:

  1. to implement and strengthen the existing AU instruments and decisions aimed at eradicating the scourge of terrorism and violent extremism on the continent;
  2. to expedite the operationalisation of the African Standby Force (ASF); and
  3. to continue engaging the United Nations regarding the utilisation of assessed contributions for the benefit of the AU-mandated Peace Support Operations.

Regarding Unconstitutional Changes of Government, the Summit:

  1. undertook to strengthen the interface between the African Governance Architecture (AGA), African Peace and Security Architecture (APSA) and the African Peer Review Mechanism (APRM), in order to facilitate the consolidation of good governance, particularly constitutionalism and the rule of law;
  2. agreed to create a conducive environment for the effective participation of women and youths in political processes which Zimbabwe is already implementing;
  3. encouraged Member States, AU Organs and Regional Economic Communities to develop appropriate mechanisms and programmes designed to deepen democracy and harmonise constitutional principles.

The Decisions of the Extraordinary Summit, among others:

  1. called on the Peace and Security Council to immediately operationalise its Sub-Committee on Counter Terrorism;
  2. requested the Peace and Security Council to establish a Sub-Committee on Unconstitutional Changes of Government, monitor trends and report annually to the Assembly of Heads of State and Government, and to re-activate its Sub-Committee on Sanctions; and
  3. mandated the AU Commission, in collaboration with Member States and Regional Economic Communities, to expedite the development of a comprehensive Continental Strategic Plan of Action for countering terrorism and violent extremism in Africa.

Cabinet stresses that the Summit’s major outcome was the unanimous affirmation by African leaders that terrorism and unconstitutional changes of Government were not welcome on the continent. The Meeting was an endorsement of Africa’s goal of providing African solutions to African problems.

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