At the National budget hearing yesterday, the Zimbabwean Minister of Finance, Mthuli Ncube announced that the government has set aside resources for the launch of its first satellite as part of the effort of the country to engage more on research and development.
“Research and development are critical for Zimbabwe’s social-economic transformation and competitiveness, as the country strives to attain Vision of 2030. Research and Development Programmes will be supported by both Government and private sectors as the country seeks to innovate in developing new services or products, and also advance the value addition strategy. The Budget has set aside resources for Research and Development programme, including the launch of a space satellite”. – Mthuli Ncube.
In July 2018, the Zimbabwe National Geospatial and Space Agency (ZINGSA) was established operating under the Ministry of Higher and Tertiary Education, Science and Technology Development. The President, Emmerson Mnangagwa said the launch of the agency was timely as it would enhance satellite communication systems. He said the country would use the ZINGSA to enhance agriculture, mineral exploration, wildlife conservation, disease surveillance and infrastructure management and mapping.“This programme is expected to enhance Zimbabwe’s capabilities in global policy discourses on generation, access, use and regulation of the application of space technologies and innovations for sustainable development.
At the presentation of the ZWD 63.6 billion (about USD 176 million) national budget, the minister said the country is expected to record an economic recovery of up to 3% in 2020 against a projected negative growth of -6.5% this year. In addition, Ncube said the projected economic recovery is premised on expectations that Zimbabwe would record a better rainfall season supported by increased support towards rehabilitation and development of irrigation infrastructure to sustain agricultural projects and other issues.