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“Long while” before bilateral aid: Zimbabwe finance minister

By on September 16, 2009

Zimbabwe’s Finance Minister Tendai Biti said on Wednesday it would be a “long while” before the country, struggling to pull itself out of an economic crisis, received bilateral assistance.

Biti also told a mining conference that Zimbabwe could not return to the use of the local dollar — abandoned at the start of the year after hyperinflation rendered it worthless — until the economy could support the currency.

Zimbabwe says it needs $10 billion in foreign aid to rebuild the country, but Western nations are reluctant to release cash without further political and economic reform under a unity governmnent President Robert Mugabe formed with rival Morgan Tsvangirai.

“It’s going to be a long while before bilateral assistance comes to Zimbabwe … so we are having to look at foreign direct investment,” Biti said.


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