Zimbabwe Plans to Become Africa’s Dubai With Offshore Financial Centre, Sparking Mixed Reactions

Zimbabwe Plans to Become Africa’s Dubai With Offshore Financial Centre, Sparking Mixed Reactions

  • Zimbabwe hopes to attract foreign investment by setting up an offshore financial centre in Victoria Falls
  • US veteran banker Marc Holtzman has been appointed board chairman and plans to build confidence
  • Many social media users have expressed mixed reactions to the move, with some unsure if it is realistic

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HARARE - Zimbabwe is making money moves by setting up an offshore financial centre in the resort city of Victoria Falls.

Zimbabwe is setting up an offshore financial centre with the hope of becoming Africa's Dubai. Image: Stringer
Source: Getty Images

The government believes the move will attract foreign investment. Finance minister Mthuli Ncube is confident that the centre will be comparable to the Isle of Man, Mauritius and Dubai.

He said Zimbabwe wants to compete with any offshore financial centre in the world, according to News24.

The move has already gained international support, with US veteran banker Marc Holtzman being appointed board chairman. He has over 35 years of experience in emerging markets and is also the chairman of Zimbabwe’s biggest lender, CBZ Holdings.

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Zimbabwe has been shunned from international capital markets since defaulting on payments to the World Bank, the International Monetary Fund and other lenders, TimesLIVE reported. Holtzman said to deal with it, the centre will need to build confidence.

Listings on VFEX have been attracted by the trade in US dollars, tax exemptions on capital gains and the ability to repatriate funds from a country where foreign exchange is in short supply. It now has eight traded businesses.

Social media users react to Zimbabwe’s Victoria Falls offshore financial centre

@HonourableMembr said:

“They should take care of citizens before thinking about Dubai. Their citizens brave Lacoste-infested rivers to look for greener pastures in South Africa.”

@GenduToit commented:

“Who is going to trust Zimbabwe with their investments?”

@matjopenaG posted:

“That's a nice idea.”

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@Langalovuyo wrote:

“My hopes are for this country, many would be surprised.”

@m0ntane added:

“Dreams are important but they have to be based somewhat on reality. At the very least we should be aiming for a functional economy, cities with running water, no power blackouts and properly maintained decent road networks. We are not asking for much, just the basics.”

“Dubai loading”: Gayton McKenzie shows off R4.5bn Central Karoo District logistics hub project

Briefly News also reported that Central Karoo mayor Gayton McKenzie has pinned his hopes on turning the Beaufort West into the African Dubai. The mayor unveiled the planes for a R4.5 billion logistics hub which will create jobs for locals.

The leader of the Patriotic Alliance shared the plans for the project’s first phase on social media, bragging that the project is “Dubai loading.”

McKenzie added that Beaufort West is situated in the middle of South Africa, so transforming the municipality into a critical player in logistics only makes sense.

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Source: Briefly News

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