Zim, OPEC in US $20m Education Pact

Government and the OPEC Fund for International Development on Friday signed a US$ 20 million pact which will see the funds being channeled towards the construction of 17 schools in rural areas.

The First Education Project Facility was signed on the sidelines of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) annual meetings which ended yesterday in Lima, Peru.

“The project will go a long way in complementing government’s efforts in social infrastructure development.

“The Government of Zimbabwe is grateful to the OPEC fund for international Development for the loan facility and looks forward to increased cooperation,” said Chinamasa in a statement.

The US$ 20 million will be paid over 20 years including a grace period with an interest rate of 1.5% per annum. Service charges are 1%.

As part of the agreement that was signed by the Minister of Finance, Patrick Chinamasa and the Director General of OFID, Suleiman J Al-Herbish, the Zimbabwean Government will contribute US$ 2 million to co-finance the project.

The facility is meant for the construction of 12 primary schools and 5 secondary schools in rural areas in 8 provinces.

The project will also provide relevant equipment and furniture as well as standard houses for teachers for the targeted schools.

OFID is a multilateral development finance institution established in 1976 by the member countries  of the Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) and it is mandated to finance cooperation between OPEC member countries and other developing countries by providing financial support to the latter for their socio-economic development.