The agreement between Zimbabwe and the United Arab Emirates on promotion and protection of investments signed in 2018 and ratified in 2020 has been gazetted by President Mnangagwa, in terms of the International Treaties Act, and so has come into force.
Essentially, the agreement lays down that businesses and citizens of the UAE can invest freely in Zimbabwe and Zimbabwean concerns in the UAE, except for natural resources in the UAE, and that these investments will be protected and profits and returns be freely remittable.
Investors will also be able to liquidate their investment and get their money out without any problems or delays.
While expropriation is permitted, there are detailed rules to be followed, basically ensuring that the owner of an expropriated investment gets full market value, or if this cannot be set then a fair price for the investment.
The money paid out in this process is immediately remittable.
In the event of any disputes that cannot be settled by negotiation there are set arbitration processes with the selection of those doing the arbitration set out in advance.
State investments are even more tightly protected.
The purpose of the agreement is to bring non-business risks down to something very close to zero. While business success and profits are not guaranteed, the external investor will have the same rights as a local investor plus the rights to remit profits and remit their capital if they wind up the investment.
The carefully laid down rights and procedures are designed to promote investment by making investors feel confident that their rights and business will be fully protected.