ECONET Wireless Zimbabwe is prepared to work with Government in stimulating economic revival through spearheading investments that develops infrastructure and creation of jobs.
The company expressed its commitment to contribute to the fiscus through payment of taxes, a senior company official said
Econet has so far spent about $900 million in the local economy through payment of various taxes, duty and levies since dollarisation. The company has also invested about $94 million towards the purchase of equipment. Speaking at the Institute of internal auditors conference in Victoria Falls yesterday, Econet group chief executive Mr Douglas Mboweni unpacked the company’s intention to grow and create value in the society “Since dollarisation the company has spent money towards improving service delivery as well as maintaining standards. “About $900 million has been spent already while about $94 million has been spent on the purchase of equipment,” said Mr Mboweni. The company also revealed that it has invested $1,2 billion in the economy since the country’s largest telecommunications company was started 15 years ago. Mr Mboweni said more than 50 000 direct and indirect jobs had been created, more than 20 000 small businesses had been sustained by the company and in excess of 25 000 young people are now employed selling airtime and other services.
He said investment made by Econet is a commitment by the company to play a part in the revival of the country’s economic fortunes. Mr Mboweni urged other companies to invest in infrastructural development of the country and Econet’s expansion had created capacity to provide telecommunication services to more than 8,5 million customers. He said as a result of such huge investments, Zimbabwe now had the highest number of people accessing banking services via the mobile phone in Africa after Kenya, following the introduction of EcoCash. Discussing the impact of the business over the last 15 years of its operations, Mr Mboweni said Econet has religiously honoured its obligations in the payment of taxes, fees and duties to Government. Mr Mboweni said Econet was also the mainstay of the Zimbabwe Stock Exchange, stating that “more shares are traded in Econet than any other company and we are the main vehicle by which foreign investors are still investing in the country, by way of the stock exchange”.He said the number of direct and indirect jobs had not only been provided by Econet, but also by its suppliers, dealers, vendors, as well as construction firms contracted by the company.“We are the biggest empowerment company, and the biggest ‘empowerer’ of others in the economy of Zimbabwe,” he said.
Mr Mboweni said the company is at the moment working towards helping Government in stimulating economic revival.