Posted by: Sam Carson | 27 September, 2007

Zimbabwe’s nationalization bill

Al Jazeera reports on a controversial bill pushed through government that could, possibly, make the African nations economy even more volatile.  The bill takes majority control from foreign operations in a range of businesses including mines and banks.  The face of this bill is “empowerment”:

Paul Mangwana, the economic empowerment minister, said: “We cannot continue to have a skewed economic environment where our people are not able to fully participate.”

The bill would give the minister responsibility for reviewing, approving or rejecting all proposed transactions, and also sweeping powers to cancel the operating licences of companies that fail to adopt the stipulated shareholding structure.

Is that the whole reason?

Mugabe, 83, and in power since independence from Britain in 1980, has accused some foreign-owned firms of working with his Western opponents to topple his government by raising prices without justification and stashing foreign currency proceeds abroad.

Zimbabwe has the world’s highest inflation rate, above 6,600 per cent, while four in five adults are out of formal work, with persistent shortages of foreign currency, fuel and food.

Read more from Carson’s Post on Zimbabwe

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