Brenthurst Discussion Paper 1/2008. Zimbabwe After the Election: A Path to Recovery, Stabilisation and Economic Growth


A discussion paper examining the potential post-election situation in Zimbabwe and options for economic recovery. To access the report, please click here

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Summary 

 

Presuming the installation of a legitimate government, critical post-election steps on Zimbabwe’s path to stabilisation and recovery include the need for forward-looking, investor-friendly policies on:

 

·        land settlement

·        economic management and transformation

·        human security and rights

 

Zimbabwe’s commercial agricultural sector was traditionally the key driver of its economy. Every area of economic activity in Zimbabwe has suffered considerable damage since the launch of the land reform programme. Its effect on all the main indicators of quality of life in Zimbabwe has been catastrophic.

 

Rehabilitation of this sector is the key component to Zimbabwe’s economic recovery.

 

This is dependent on getting the commercial farms to produce again; and this will hinge on the ability to put policies in place that attract private sector investment. Thus, the overall purpose of any recovery programme has to be to reinstate market forces and good governance on land and economic management. This would include permitting market-related foreign currency exchange rates, interest rates, wages and retail prices, and transparently reviewing and invigorating property rights. With such measures, the stage could be set for a rapid economic recovery.

 

A health warning however: If Zimbabwe’s rate of economic decline has average over eight percent per annum since 2000, it will take the same rate of growth for the same period get back to the moment of decline. Nonetheless, a rapid bounce-back is possible to respectable levels of income if there is political normalisation and the reinstatement of market principles to the economy.

 




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