Kazakhstan has confirmed an interest in investing in Zimbabwe, Space in Africa has confirmed.
Kazakhstan is a world leader in aerospace, and runs the only existing programme to launch people into space, in addition to regularly propelling satellites into orbit.
According to Africa Daily Voice, yesterday, the Chamber of International Commerce of Kazakhstan invited President Emmerson Mnangagwa to a working lunch in Astana, and in response to his overview of the opportunities abounding in Zimbabwe, they expressed readiness to do business in the country.
This was a positive response to President Mnangagwa’s call for the leading business people and industrialists to partner Zimbabwe.
According to a potential investor, Alexander Mashkevich, who chairs the management board of the Eurasian Resources Group (ERG), his company had already invested US$100 million in Zimbabwean platinum and coal projects and they were now negotiating projects that covered chrome extraction and construction of a ferro-alloy facility in the country.
“Zimbabwe has a lot of opportunities for business and that is why I have been there several times and know what I am talking about,” said Mashkevich, whose ERG employs over 70 000 people and is the world’s largest ferrochrome producer.
The board chair of Alageum Group, Mr Yerkebulan Ilyasov, added: “We are ready to co-operate with your energy companies and the Ministry of Energy, so that you can benefit from our ever advancing technologies.”
The Alegeum Group is Kazakhstan’s largest electro-technical firm, operating more than 30 subsidiaries and plants in the sector.
The deputy chair of pharmaceutical giant Chimfarm, Mr Aziz Turdiyev, said they were keen to establish a win-win partnership with Zimbabwe; while the deputy chair of KazAgro said the two sides should explore ways of developing irrigation and the wider agriculture sector.
Mr Yerdan Bekhozhin, the deputy chair of the Export Insurance Company, said they were willing to facilitate investment into Zimbabwe.
Mr Bekhzozhin’s counterpart at Kazakh Invest, Mr Marat Birimzhan, lauded President Mnangagwa’s clarity of vision on attracting investment, saying such lucidity was behind Kazakhstan’s rise as the leading destination of foreign direct investment in the region.
Mr Malik Olzhabekov, who is the deputy chair of the Aerospace Committee of Kazakhstan’s Ministry of Defence and Aerospace Industry, offered to run a one-month pilot programme for any sector of Government’s choice for it to appreciate the services offered by satellite technologies.
Zimbabwe’s Minister of Finance and Economic Development, Professor Mthuli Ncube, said there was need to put in place an investments protection agreement.
He further stated that Zimbabwe was looking for partners “to take us to the next level”.