Nigerian, United Arab Emirates firms eye Zimbabwe’s real estate projects

By Stanley James, Business Editor

Zimbabwe’s real estate industry is poised for recovery due to renewed investor interest, with Nigerian and United Arab Emirates companies submitting proposals for various projects.

The investors who held talks with Zimbabwe Investment and Development Agency (ZIDA) officials this Tuesday expressed optimism over prospects of investing in housing delivery, infrastructure units as well as industrial and commercial properties.

“The talks were very cordial as they also offered an opportunity to get to understand one another’s needs, while also being given the platform to see and assess what Zimbabwe offers. Therefore, this presented us with an opportunity of coming back into the country once all the approvals are made,” said Dr Kingsley Azonobi, Domak Group Chief Executive Officer.

Zimbabwe Investment and Development Agency Acting Chief Executive Officer, Mrs Duduzile Shinya noted, “The talks went well and we are now in a position to assess their proposals so that due diligence is done. Remember, they have also inquired for other projects apart from the real estate, so we as ZIDA, we shall continue to engage them in all the aspects.”

The business proposals by the Nigerian and United Arab Emirates investors are now being assessed by regulatory authorities.

Dr Hillary Emoh, Royal Advisor to His Highness Sheik Ahmed Bin Faisal Al Qassimi of the UAE said, “The real estate sector in Zimbabwe has what it all takes to be viable. Though expensive, there are very good opportunities that we can utilise to our advantage taking the huge demand for housing across the country.”

The real estate sector, though capital intensive, is also considered an important element in hedging against macroeconomic variables such as inflation.

 IDA notes that the vast development opportunities in the real estate sector have also seen renewed interest by local and foreign firms.

Aided by government’s increased spending on roads, irrigation, dam construction and housing projects among other areas, the real estate sector has also seen a rise in business activities during the past few years.

The move has also resulted in increased sales for cement manufacturing firms, building material entities and brick production companies.

As a key economic enabler, the real estate industry is also considered by the World Bank as important in contributing to overall annual Gross Domestic Product rates for global economies.