The West may take a lot of convincing.
Mnangagwa, once a top deputy to Mugabe, is among the senior government officials banned from travelling or banking in the United States and Europe.
Western countries froze his assets in protest of human rights violations, and so far have shown little inclination to ease them.
In July, Britain added new sanctions to a Zimbabwean official for fraudulently redeeming treasury bills at 10 times their official value.
But Gwanyanya said making even small payments on its debts shows the world that Mnangagwa wants to do business differently from his predecessor.
“That Zimbabwe has started to do so at a time where our debt is very in excess would unlock some capital from the external world,” he said.
Zimbabwe’s economy has swung dramatically since 2000, shrinking at a breathtaking rate during years of hyperinflation, before clawing its way back to growth in 2009.
Covid-19 and a drought pushed the economy back into recession, with inflation returning to triple digits.
Inflation has settled back down into double digits — sitting at 56 percent in July, down from 106 the previous month — and Ncube has ambitious plans to bring the country into the global middle class by 2030.
To do that, Zimbabwe will need capital and investors. Paying down its debts is one way to make the country more attractive.
“Essentially it’s a gesture,” Gwanyanya said. “It does not mean we are able to pay the complete debt but it will send a signal to the rest of the world about our willingness to service debts and therefore change perceptions of how others view the country.”- Mail Online