Thursday, July 18, 2024

Botswana’s investment minister calls for opening up of borders for “skilled” foreigners

Junior Minister at Investment, Trade and Industry, Biggie Butale has cautioned the  Government to come out of the cocoons and make deliberate and  risky decisions, citing big economies like America that were bold enough to build “enviable economies out of immigration.”

“Enviable big economies such as Canada, Dubai including the super rich United States of America are the products of immigrants,” Butale argued, calling on the Government to follow suit and bite the bullet to recruit even 2 million immigrants to enter Botswana.

“They will build infrastructure cities across the country providing employment and in the process ramp up the country’s gross domestic product,” Butale added while responding to the State of Nation Address on Wednesday.

The entrance however should be strictly monitored, the Assistant Minister calling for a “selective and targeted immigration.”

“By allowing them inside our country does not mean opening borders and allowing everyone to come into the country. I mean selective and targeted immigration,” Tati West Member of Parliament emphasized.

Presently, to obtain work or residential permit, let alone citizenship remains a tedious exercise fraught with red tape and bureaucratic rules hampering efforts to foreign investment much needed by the country to diversify its economy. 

An ambitious legislator, Butale is even contemplating of a dual carriage way stretching from Ramatlabama and Ramokgwebana borders conveying goods and services across the country and neighbouring countries.

“This will propel our economy to greater heights…to reach full potential,” a lawyer- cum- politician Butale noted, citing even the introduction of high train from Johannesburg to Gaborone including even the spectacular international Formula One race into the country.

“Money follow ideas…ideas do not follow money. We should make deliberate and bold decisions sometimes for the good of our economy,” he concluded, predicting a domino effect with other sectors of the economy as a result.



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