HARARE Zimbabwe (Xinhua) --
Zimbabwe announced on Thursday it had
relaxed visa controls for Seychelles as it pushes with
reform efforts aimed at spurring tourism growth.
2016 mid-term fiscal policy review statement in
parliament, Finance Minister Patrick Chinamasa said
nationals from Seychelles no longer required a visa to
nationals from the island country were required to apply
for visa on entry.
Zimbabwe would also review visa policy for Chinese and
Turkish nationals travelling on trips arranged through
travel agencies and tour operators.
In March this
year, the government relaxed visa controls for China and
36 other countries to allow nationals from those countries
to apply for visa on entry.
nationals from the countries were required to apply for
and obtain visas prior to travelling. The government
recently said Chinese tourists into Zimbabwe surged by 32
percent in the first half of 2016 after relaxation of the
the visa reforms were meant to spur growth in tourism,
currently contributing 1 billion U.S. dollars in revenue
and 11 percent to Gross Domestic Product(GDP) from 2
million visitors annually.
has set to implement further reforms to boost growth in
the sector so that it can contribute 5 billion dollars in
revenue and 15 percent to GDP from 5 million annual
tourist arrivals by 2020.
Zimbabwe cuts 2016
growth forecast to 1.2 percent
HARARE Zimbabwe (Xinhua) --
Zimbabwe has revised down growth forecast
for 2016 to 1.2 percent from the initial 2.7 percent due
to under-performance of agriculture, the mainstay of the
economy, Finance Minister Patrick Chinamasa said Thursday.
expressed grave concern at rising public sector wage bill,
which accounted for 96.8 percent of total government
revenue to June this year.
minister was presenting the 2016 mid-term fiscal policy
review statement in parliament.
operating in a tight fiscal space as state revenue has
shrunk significantly in recent years due to company
closures, downsizing and negligible foreign investment
revenue inflows have seen government in recent months
failing to pay its workers on time.
parliament that budget deficit had already exceeded target
in the first half of the year at 623 million U.S. dollars,
and warned that if not contained, the deficit could rise
above 1 billion dollars for the whole year.
exports during the first half of 2016 went down nine
percent to 1.1 billion dollars compared to the same period
last year, while Diaspora remittances were 15 percent down
to 387.9 million from 457.8 million dollars last year.
collection in the first half under-performed by nine
percent while for the whole of 2016 revenue was projected
at 3.75 billion dollars, down 2.5 percent from the target
of 3.85 billion dollars, he said.
Zimbabwe would maintain the multi-currency system
introduced in 2009 until such a time when economic
fundamentals are strong enough to support a local
ditched its hyperinflation ravaged currency in favor of a
basket of multi currencies in 2009 that include the U.S.
dollar, British Pound, Euro, Chinese Yuan, Japanese Yen
and South African Rand.
bank has since announced plans to introduce local bond
notes in October to stem cash shortages that began early
said Zimbabwe, which has an external debt of 7.5 billion
with 80 percent being arrears, was ratcheting up
re-engagement with multilateral creditors, including the
International Monetary Fund, World Bank and African
Development Bank to clear the arrears and help unlock
fresh funding from the financiers to revive the ailing