tendai_biti_.jpgFinance Minister Tendai Biti will today present the 2010 Mid-Term Fiscal Policy Review amid high expectations from industry and ordinary Zimbabweans of a stable economic environment and increased production output.

The Mid-Term Budget Review is being presented at a time when significant growth has been registered in the country after a ten year economic recession.

 

However, there are fears that gains achieved since February last year might be reversed if stakeholders fail to address fundamental challenges affecting industry and households.

In the initial 2010 budget, the Finance Minister set a US$2,2 billion budget, revealing that US$810 million of the total budget would be financed from external institutions, but this has  not materialised as only US$210 million has been raised, a move analysts say might pose difficulties to fiscal authorities in financing strategic sectors such as agriculture, mining, manufacturing and tourism.

An economic analyst, Mr Sonny Mabeju says Mr Biti faces a tough task in balancing spending and revenue inflows to ensure that the projected 7% economic growth rate is a reality by year end.

“There is nothing other than the need to ensure that the Government comes up with systems to boost production,” said Mr. Mabeju.

The Confederation of Zimbabwe Industries President, Mr Joseph Kanyekanye says Government should relax import duty structures for raw materials to facilitate industrial growth.

A cross section of Zimbabweans say the Mid-Term Budget Review should focus on bread and butter issues, through increasing financial allocations to education and health, providing incentives for civil servants, boosting the availability of locally produced goods, and facilitating price stability.

While government has shown its commitment to solving challenges that are affecting the economy such as liquidity constraints, high utility costs, depressed domestic demand, low industrial production, tight credit facilities from banks as well as working capital problems, it remains to be seen how Mr. Biti will come out of parliament building having presented a budget that meets the needs of the economy and populace.