THE year 2022 has seen the country recording many positives as far as development is concerned and the challenge this year is to maintain the momentum.
A lot of ground was covered in implementing infrastructural development projects such as road and bridge construction, upgrading and expansion of hospitals and clinics, construction of dams which include the multi-million dollar Lake Gwayi-Shangani, establishment of new companies across the country and many other such projects that have transformed the livelihoods of citizens.
The country is now an investment destination of choice in the region and beyond as evidenced by the many new companies that are investing millions of dollars in the different sectors of the economy such as mining.
Many Lithium mining projects are taking shape across the country and very soon the country will be among the leading producers of lithium which is the mineral of the moment due to production of electric cars.
Lithium is used to manufacture rechargeable batteries for electric vehicles, mobile phones, laptops and digital cameras.
Construction works have already started for a multi-million dollar world class lithium mining plant in Fort Rixon, Matabeleland South province.
The Zulu Lithium Mining project which is being implemented by the United Kingdom-listed Premier African Minerals, is expected to start production this year.
Recently President Mnangagwa presided over the groundbreaking ceremony for a new US$130 million Sabi Star lithium Mine in Buhera district, Manicaland province which is expected to produce 300 000 tonnes of the mineral annually.
The Sabi Star Lithium Mine is also expected to start production this year. The other Lithium mines are Bikita Minerals, Arcadia Lithium Mine and Kamativi Lithium Mine.
Many companies last year responded to the Zimbabwe is Open for Business mantra hence the many investment projects taking shape across the country.
ArcelorMittal, one of the world’s largest steel producers which is already importing 70 percent of coke produced in Zimbabwe announced late last year that it is planning to build coke oven batteries thereby creating thousands of jobs in Hwange and Binga districts.
Dinson Iron and Steel Company (Disco)’s US$1 billion Steel Plant near Mvuma is among the big investment projects taking shape.
The foreign direct investments (FDI) being witnessed across the country confirm the success of Zimbabwe’s engagement and re-engagement policy which should be consolidated this year.
We want to see more companies investing in the country this year hence the need for Government to continue creating a conducive environment.
Zimbabweans including those in the diaspora should take a leading role in exploiting the country’s abundant natural resources such as minerals. Ilizwe lakhiwa ngabaninilo (Nyika inovakwa nevene vayo).