An advisory body in the African Union (AU), the Economic, Social and Cultural Council (ECOSOCC) has today issued a communique on the escalated call for the removal of economic sanctions on Zimbabwe, a development that comes after the United States (US) extended sanctions on Zimbabwe to a year on Monday this week.
The body representing Southern Africa says it calls for the removal of economic sanctions against Zimbabwe, its public and private institutions for the easing of the task ahead of solving the economic and humanitarian crises in the Republic.
“These sanctions have made it difficult for government to access lines of credit, debt relief and directly affects the country’s ability to meet its fiduciary obligations,” ECOSOCC says in a press release.
“The sanctions have also made it difficult for both government and private entities to access investment and financial services.”
AU’s advisory council, on the impact of sanctions, says the current situation of Zimbabwe, due to the list of companies on the OFAC (US’ Office of Foreign Assets Control) and EU (European Union) sanctions list, is in dire as the embargoes target job-creating entities which put the ordinary person through undue suffering.
“Furthermore, due to state-owned enterprises being targeted, the sanctions regime makes it difficult for Zimbabwe, which like all African states rely on private public partnerships for economic growth, to maximize on the potentials of coordinated efforts between the government and civil society to resuscitate the economy,” ECOSOCC says.
“The direct impact of the frustration from failed efforts to improve livelihoods in the Republic is the tensioning of the relationship between the state and its people.”
“This is resulting in avoidable casualties in the form of human life and cooperation of efforts towards constructive nation-building,” ECOSOCC goes on.
The US, on Monday, extended sanctions to Zimbabwe saying the African country’s actions and policies continue to pose “an unusual and extraordinary threat” to the policy of the United States.
The sanctions are targeting Government parastatals and individuals within the Zimbabwean ruling party.
“These actions and policies had contributed to the deliberate breakdown in the rule of law in Zimbabwe, to politically motivated violence and intimidation in that country, and to political and economic instability in the southern African region,” US President Donald Trump said in a Notice.
Sanctions also authorise the blocking of property to people and institutions that are targeted by the US.
“Due to the sanctions also being proclaimed on private entities in the agricultural, financial and mining industry, which are the main means of Zimbabwean contribution to the formal economy, they have affected the ability of the private sector in Zimbabwe to interact or carry about any ordinary business,” ECOSOCC said.
“This is therefore stifling its ability to make any meaningful contribution to the economy. This is resulting in the current 85% unemployment rate.”