As announced by the Indigenization minister, Patrick Zhuwao, last week Wednesday, Zimbabwe will revoke the licenses of foreign firms who refuse to sell about 51% of their shares to Black Zimbabweans.
“Businesses have continued to disregard Zimbabwe’s indigenisation laws as if daring our President and his government to do something about their contemptuous behaviour,” -Zhuwao
According to the Minister, it is either they comply with the ultimatum or “close shop!”
There has been a situation where white farmers were evicted from their lands in Zimbabwe. It got worse when President Mugabe did not compensate them for it. Now the President on the prompting of the IMF to clearly state his idea of indigenization, says the indigenization policies will include compensation for white farmers.
6-years ago, it was speculated that President Mugabe used the land reform guise to do favors for his “allies” by way of granting them land ownership. Of the 40% of lands recovered from white farmers, it is reported that President Mugabe and his cohorts now own all of them.
“If white settlers just took the land from us without paying for it, we can, in a similar way, just take it from them without paying for it,” -Mugabe.
The Indigenisation and Economic Empowerment Act was passed in 2008. However the aim and implementation of the policies has not been clear enough to many. More so, white firms lament that the April 1st ultimatum will inhibit their investments and returns. Zimbabwe is a mineral rich African nation. The nation is home to 2 of the world’s largest platinum producing companies- Anglo American Platinum and Impala Platinum.
The indigenization policy will not only affect the foreign based mining companies. It cuts across to all functional white-owned companies in Zimbabwe. Such companies as Standard Chartered Plc and Barclays Plc will also be affected.