Economy shrinking by 1 percent a month


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Zimbabwe’s economy has been shrinking by 1 percent every month over the last three years so companies require more innovation to perform well, Barbican Holdings, which was listed on the Zimbabwe Stock Exchange in November says in its annual report for the year ending December.

It says it sees more opportunities in the region particularly in South Africa and Botswana, where it has subsidiaries, as well as in the United Kingdom.

The financial group which took over listed departmental store chain, Haddon and Sly, to get a listing, says the recession has been mainly caused by the shortage of foreign currency, drought and the current land reform programme which has resulted in a drop in agricultural production.

It says the shortage of foreign currency has been exacerbated by capital out-flows and the absence of new capital inflows. And contrary to the government’s belief that Bureaux de change were worsening the foreign currency shortage, Barbican says their closure is likely to cause a further shortage.

It also says inflation which stood at 200 percent in December but went up to 208 percent in January is likely to worsen and could reach 300 percent this year.

According to its results fee and other income dropped sharply from $728.2 million to $64.2 million but investment and similar income rose significantly from $159.6 million to $1.2 billion.

Operating profit increased marginally from, $695.2 million to $747.2 million. A reduction in the share going to minority interest from $128.3 million to $4 million saw net profit increase from $348.1 million to $505.3 million.

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The Insider

The Insider is a political and business bulletin about Zimbabwe, edited by Charles Rukuni. Founded in 1990, it was a printed 12-page subscription only newsletter until 2003 when Zimbabwe's hyper-inflation made it impossible to continue printing.

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