President Mnangagwa said the entry of Nedbank into Zimbabwe’s financial sector resonates well with the new government’s mantra that Zimbabwe is open for business and shows confidence in the country’s trade and investment climate and that Zimbabwe welcomes the group’s support to foster the country’s economic growth.

President Mnangagwa said this while officiating at the rebranding ceremony of Merchant Bank of Central Africa (MBCA) to Nedbank Zimbabwe Limited at a dinner held in Harare last night.

The financial institution was formed following Nedbank’s acquisition of majority shareholding in MBCA, leading to the name change.

President Mnangagwa said the development of financial services sector and socio-economic transformation provides critical functions to the economy, including financing production, payments, settlements, savings and investments and financial advice among other functions which compliment government’s efforts to turn around the economy.

Cde Mnangagwa implored the banking sector to not only serve the needs of customers but also to be a catalyst for industrialisation, improve capacity utilisation in the entire economy through provision of trade and credit finance in line with the new economic trajectory.

In recent times some financial institutions in Zimbabwe have been accused of externalisation and corruption and President Mnangagwa said measures are being taken to deal with these vices.

President Mnangagwa urged the new bank to take advantage of its long experience in the financial sector and as a globally recognised brand that already operates in the region to provide funding for not only retooling and resuscitation of ailing companies or working capital requirements but to also venture into infrastructure development, agriculture, modernisation and mechanisation, and energy sectors.

He commended the new bank for the support that it is already rendering to the country through extension lines of credit for pre and post shipment facility for trade finance and for tobacco post shipment facility.

Among the guests were Ministers Mike Bimha, July Moyo, South African Ambassador to Zimbabwe Mr Mphakama Mbete, Nedbank board chairman Mr Willard Zireva, Nedbank group chief operating officer Mr Mfundo Nkuhlu and Nedbank Zimbabwe managing director Dr Charity Jinya.