02 June 2021, APRM’s Africa Network on Corporate Governance of State-Owned Enterprises (SOEs) convened a virtual meeting to facilitate peer exchanges between the Public Enterprises Holding and Administration Agency (PEHAA) in Ethiopia and State Enterprises Restructuring Agency in Zimbabwe. The meeting was convened at the request of the Government of Zimbabwe with a desire to learn from the recent SOEs reform in Ethiopia.
The Government of Zimbabwe took a policy position to review its current State-Owned Enterprises ownership model considering poorly performing SOEs sector in the country and has decided to migrate from a decentralized ownership model to a centralized ownership model.
Against this backdrop, the APRM was invited to participate at a high-level workshop convened by the Presidency in Zimbabwe which was held on 14 October 2020. The workshop was attended by the whole Cabinet, Permanent Secretaries, and other senior Government Officials. The presentation from the APRM highlighted the various ownership models that are prevalent among APRM member countries with the main emphasize on the centralized ownership model.
At the moment, the Government of Zimbabwe is in the process of establishing the institutional and legal framework for a centralized ownership model and the State Enterprises Restructuring Agency is tasked with the ongoing reform of State-owned enterprises and parastatals. The African Network on Corporate Governance of SOEs was requested to facilitate interactions with the Ethiopian counterpart to exchange views on the country’s ownership model to inform the ongoing institutional framework setup in Zimbabwe.
The peer learning with Ethiopia focused on the institutional framework for a centralized ownership arrangement, the steps taken, and challenges faced by Ethiopia in migrating its current ownership arrangement as well as legal instruments used in establishing a holding company in Ethiopia.
The two institutions have agreed to further continue working together in advancing the agenda and have proposed to sign an MOU that formalize the technical exchange. Moreover, a technical workshop will be convened to delve deeper and explore the institutional arrangements.