Zimbabwe has secured a $ 250m line of credit from a London based firm for the importation of essential goods, the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe said Monday.
“The Ministry of Finance and Economic Development, the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe and Gemcorp Group are pleased to announce that they have signed a $ 250 m commercial loan facility.
This five-year facility will enable the importation of essential and intermediate goods to support the Zimbabwean economy,” the central bank said in a statement.
Finance Minister Mthuli Ncube welcomed the loan facility and said the granting of the facility by Gemcorp is a strong signal by foreign investors of their growing confidence in Zimbabwe. “I expect more investors to follow suit,” the finance minister said.
The Governor of the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe John Mangudya said the line of credit is coming at an appropriate time to shore up foreign currency liquidity after the end of the tobacco selling season last month. “This, together with other facilities that we have secured, should go a long way to meet the import requirements for essential products and services for the national economy,” he said.
Atanas Bostandjiev, founder and chief executive of Gemcorp Group said the facility will help finance and coordinate the delivery of essential goods to help support the Zimbabwean economy.
“The trade finance gap in Africa remains significant and is an enduring constraint to economic development. The Gemcorp Group remains focused on working with local partners and borrowers across Africa and the rest of the emerging markets to provide creative funding solutions and foster trade and investment in the region,” he said.
Zimbabwe is currently facing an acute shortage of foreign currency to import essential goods and raw materials. The forex shortage has resulted in prices of some basic commodities such as bread and cooking oil going up in recent weeks as manufacturers and retailers struggle to import raw materials and the goods.