The World Bank has commended Zimbabwe for its transparency on debt reporting but remains equally concerned that the Southern African country continues to be in debt distress.
The Bank said Zimbabwe by improving transparency is also boosting its loan eligibility status. Responding to inquiries from The Herald, a World Bank spokesperson said:
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We also note improved transparency of debt reporting which is a positive development. Zimbabwe ranks higher than many of its peers in the region in terms of debt reporting, as shown in the October 2020 World Bank Africa Pulse report.
Improving debt transparency through publication of the annual borrowing plan, the adoption of a debt management strategy, and a re-engagement roadmap would strengthen the country’s ability to borrow at better financial terms and conditions.
However, Zimbabwe continues to be in debt distress as the majority of external debt is in arrears. This limits Government’s ability to respond to climatic, health and economic shocks, such as those caused by the Covid-19 pandemic by borrowing at concessional terms or participating in global initiatives, such as the global Debt Service Standstill Initiative.
The Bretton Woods institution also said Zimbabwe’s domestic policies such as the NDS-1 and the Budget Strategy Paper, have the potential to transform the economy.
The Bank observed, however, observed that what “matters most is the quality of their implementation and the buy-in from stakeholders.”
This comes when some analysts have claimed that Zimbabwe has on several occasions been found wanting as far as implementation of policies is concerned.
More: The Herald