THE Eastern and Southern African Trade and Development Bank (PTA Bank) has earmarked more than US$30 million for Zimbabwe, the bank’s president revealed to businessdigest this week.
The money will be targeted at projects and trade faci
The money will be availed to local banking institutions in the form of a credit line, Michael Gondwe, the PTA Bank president, said.
“Last year, the bank provided US$30 million for projects and trade facilities in this country. We expect this figure to go up further this year, as we enhance our support for the local business community,” said Gondwe.
He refused to say exactly how much the bank was committing to the country this year, but indicated arrangements had already been made to extend the credit lines under the facility to local banks.
This week Gondwe presented a US$5 million short-term line of credit to the Zimbabwe Allied Banking Group, for use by exporters in financially viable post-shipment transactions in the agro-processing, manufacturing, mining and other export-oriented transactions.
“We fully support business growth in Zimbabwe and want to surpass what we did last year. I cannot say which banks we will be working with but we are doing our best not only in Zimbabwe but in the eastern and southern African sub-region,” Gondwe told businessdigest.
PTA Bank is a developmental institution whose role is to financing development projects in east and southern Africa.
“This post-shipment facility basically caters for the export sector taking into account the need to grow foreign exchange generation capability,” said Gondwe.
Zimbabwe has over the past five years been experiencing acute foreign currency shortages.
During the year to December 2005, foreign exchange inflows into the formal market amounted to US$1,70 billion, compared to US$1,71 billion in 2004, representing a decline of 0,46%.
Underperformance in export was compensated for by increased short-term facilities. Total export shipments last year amounted to US$1,43 billion, a decline of 9,04% from US$1,58 achieved the same period in 2004.