Indigenisation will continue: Zanu-PF

2011-12-09 22:39

Bulawayo - Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe's party on Friday vowed to press ahead with a controversial "indigenisation" policy forcing foreign firms to cede a majority stake to locals.

"Zimbabwe cannot achieve any real and sustainable democracy for as long as its natural resources remain in the hands of foreigners and serve foreign interests and economies," said a document handed to about 3 000 delegates at a Zanu-PF conference.

A large number of foreign firms missed the September 25 deadline to submit proposals to the government on how they plan to release their shares by 2015.

The document said: "Zanu-PF indigenisation policy is a legitimate affirmative action measure to benefit indigenous citizens disadvantaged by unfair discrimination on the grounds of race and denied participation and benefit in their economy."

Mugabe's partner in the unity government, Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai, has warned that the law would discourage investment.

But the document entitled "Understanding the Indigenisation and Economic Empowerment Programme" argues that the law is meant help Zimbabweans "control and determine the exploitation of their resources."

In his opening address on Thursday, Mugabe who is a staunch supporter of the regulation, said the indigenisation policy would not be reversed.

The law targets companies valued at €369 000 or more, particularly mining and financial firms.

A few companies, including British owned Old Mutual and giant mining firm ZimPlat, have struck deals with the state on how to distribute the shares.

Read more on:    zimbabwe  |  southern africa  |  indigenisation

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