ZIMBABWE – The African Development Bank (AfDB) has revealed that Zimbabwe one of eight countries set to benefit from some US$428 million in loans and grants extended by the continental financier.
In a statement AfDB said the money is targeted at projects in energy and infrastructure, transport and water.
Other countries benefiting from the facility include Ghana, Tanzania, Guinea Bissau, Guinea, Senegal, Cte dIvoire and Gambia.
The board of (AfDB), on Wednesday, approved combined loans and grants amounting to US$428,43 million to finance projects in energy, infrastructure, transport and water and sanitation in eight African counties, the bank said.
Zimbabwe will receive a US$16,15 million to finance the second phase of the country’s Urgent Water Supply and Sanitation Rehabilitation (UWSSRP) project to be implemented in Harare, Chitungwiza, Ruwa and Redcliff.Â
The project aims to protect public health through service improvement, preservation of physical assets, resuscitation of capacity and improvement of the financial sustainability of the water and sanitation service providers.
AfDB recently said Zimbabwe was losing about US$1 billion annually through infrastructure deficiencies adding that current expenditure on development was not enough to support the country’s economic recovery.
Presenting a paper at the 5th Buy Zimbabwe Summit AfDB resident representative for Zimbabwe Mateus Magala said addressing the country’s infrastructure challenges would require sustained expenditure of almost US$2 billion per year over the next decade.
Zimbabwe spends around US$0,8 billion per year on infrastructure between the government budget, parastatals, donor spending, and Foreign Direct Investment (FDI), he said.
About US$0,7 billion a year is being lost while infrastructure needs an estimated at least US$14 billion to 2020 with heavy emphasis on rehabilitation, more than half of which is needed for the power sector.
The main sources of inefficiencies are under-pricing in the power, water, and roads sectors and poor financial management of utilities.
He added: If Zimbabwe could align operational inefficiencies with reasonable developing country benchmarks, these measures alone would almost double the existing flow of resources to the infrastructure sectors.