Financial Services
Zimbabwe has a diversified financial sector that offers a wide range of specialized services. The Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe (RBZ), the country’s central bank, is at the apex of the financial system and performs traditional central bank functions.

As of 31 December 2006, there were 31 banking institutions, made up of 14 commercial banks, 5 merchant banks, 5 discount houses, 3 finance houses and 4 building societies under the supervision of the Reserve Bank. There are also 17 operational asset management companies and 244 registered micro-finance and money lending institutions.

Zimbawe has a well-developed stock exchange which is open to foreign participation.

Financial institutions offer the following services to importers and exporters:

* Advice on exchange
* Local and offshore financing
* Purchase and sale of foreign currencies
* Spot and forward markets/forward exchange contracts
* Stock exchange listings
* Establishing and confirming letters of credit, both inward and outward
* Foreign bills and export documentation
* Foreign currency bonds
* International trade import and export intelligence * Traveller’s cheques * Market in commercial paper

Investing in Zimbabwe
Zimbabwe welcomes foreign investment from any part of the globe. Investors are free to decide which sectors in which they desire to invest. The following are the government's priority areas:

* Manufacturing
* Mining
* Agriculture
* Tourism

In these sectors, foreign investors are free to take 100% ownership of their ventures or to enter into joint ventures with Zimbabweans. In the services sectors that include management consultancy and construction, investors are allowed to take up 70% shareholding.

There are sectors reserved for local investors, which include primary agricultural production, livestock breeding and transport. Foreign investors wishing to participate can do so by entering into a joint-venture with a Zimbabwean national. The foreign partner can take a mazimum of 35% shareholding of the venture.

A thorough and detailed account of investment opportunities and requirements in Zimbabwe can be found at the Zimbabwe Investment Centre (ZIC) website.

© Embassy of Zimbabwe