Zimbabwe to rely on India, China for development

Harare, Oct 5 (IANS) Zimbabwean says it will not re-engage with a "hostile" and financially-ailing West but will rather rely on friends like India, China and Russia to boost the country's economic development.

Zimbabwean Foreign Minister Simbarashe Mumbengegwi said that his country is not happy with the West's intransigence and lack of objectivity as evidenced by its refusal to endorse the July 31 elections in which veteran leader Robert Mugabe and the ruling Zan-PF party scored landslide victories, Xinhua reported.

"Any country that does not want to accept the will of the people of Zimbabwe, that's their own business. I am saying it clearly that there is nothing more to negotiate with them," said Mumbengegwi, who has been the country's foreign minister since 2005.

The minister, however, urged the West, led by the EU and US, to unilaterally remove sanctions they imposed on Zimbabwe about a decade ago. "We will not negotiate with them over sanctions because we never negotiated with them to impose the sanctions in the first place," he added.

Mumbengegwi said the Zimbabwean government would continue to strengthen ties with countries such as India, China, Russia and Brazil among other emerging economies as part of the ongoing efforts to improve the economy.

The economic power of the world has shifted to the East and even Western nations were now looking that side for economic salvation, the minister said.

Since mid-2000s, Mugabe, who remains on the travel ban of US, EU, and other western countries, has adopted a "Look East" policy to more rely on the emerging nations like India, China, and Singapore for economic cooperation.

In his speech to the UN general assembly, Mugabe said the "illegal and filthy" sanctions had taken a heavy toll on the country's fragile economy and again called for their unconditional removal.