This page summarizes Enterprise Surveys data for Zimbabwe. The graphs below provide an overview of the sample and highlight the biggest obstacles experienced by private sector firms in Zimbabwe. The 12 tables below the graphs summarize key factual indicators at the country and regional levels for each of the business environment topics. A few subjective indicators are also available.




Business owners and top managers in 600 firms were interviewed from July 2016 through February 2017.

Characteristics of Firms Surveyed

Textiles & Garments: 79 Other Manufacturing: 116 Food: 94 Other Services: 181 Retail: 130 Textiles & Garments: 79 Other Manufacturing: 116 Food: 94 Other Services: 181 Food: 94 Food: 94 Textiles & Garments: 79 Textiles & Garments: 79 Other Manufacturing: 116 Other Manufacturing: 116 Retail: 130 Retail: 130 Other Services: 181 Other Services: 181 Small (5-19): 346 Large (100+): 95 Medium (20-99): 159 Small (5-19): 346 Large (100+): 95 Small (5-19): 346 Small (5-19): 346 Medium (20-99): 159 Medium (20-99): 159 Large (100+): 95 Large (100+): 95 Harare: 246 Manicaland: 91 Midlands: 97 Bulawayo: 166 Harare: 246 Manicaland: 91 Bulawayo: 166 Harare: 246 Harare: 246 Bulawayo: 166 Bulawayo: 166 Midlands: 97 Midlands: 97 Manicaland: 91 Manicaland: 91



After being presented with a list of 15 business environment obstacles, business owners and top managers in 600 firms were asked to choose the biggest obstacle to their business.

Ranking of the Top Business Environment Obstacle for Firms

% firms choosing labor regulations as the biggest obstacle: 1.8 % firms choosing electricity as the biggest obstacle: 3.3 % firms choosing business licensing as the biggest obstacle: 3.5 % firms choosing tax rates as the biggest obstacle: 3.9 % firms choosing tax administration as the biggest obstacle: 4.3 % firms choosing trade regulations as the biggest obstacle: 8.2 % firms choosing corruption as the biggest obstacle: 8.3 % firms choosing political instability as the biggest obstacle: 18.9 % firms choosing access to finance as the biggest obstacle: 20.6 % firms choosing the informal sector as the biggest obstacle: 23.6


Country Highlights summarize the key findings from the Enterprise Survey

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Country Profiles provide key investment climate indicators for a country with benchmarks against their respective regional and income groups

Zimbabwe Country Profile

Zimbabwe Country Profile

759.7KB pdf file

Sub-Saharan Africa
Lower middle income


Custom Data Set

Custom Data Set

Generate a Custom Data Set for Zimbabwe including standard errors, indicator values by firm subgroups, historical data and comparable countries.

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Indicator Zimbabwe Sub-Saharan Africa All Countries 2  
Capacity utilization (%)* Capacity utilization based on the comparison of the current output with the maximum output possible using all the resources available.

55.1 70.4 72.0  
Real annual sales growth (%) Real annualized growth in sales (using GDP deflators) expressed as a percentage

-5.2 2.5 1.9  
Annual employment growth (%) Annualized growth of permanent full-time workers expressed as a percentage

-3.6 6.7 5.0  
Annual labor productivity growth (%) Annualized growth in labor productivity where labor productivity is real sales (using GDP deflators) divided by full-time permanent workers

-1.5 -3.1 -2.5  
Percent of firms buying fixed assets Percent of firms buying fixed assets such as machinery, equipment, land or buildings

24.1 40.9 42.2  
  • Notes

    * This indicator is computed using data from manufacturing firms only.

    Additional Notes

    1. Most surveys were administered using the Enterprise Surveys Global Methodology as outlined in the Methodology page, while some others did not strictly adhere to the Enterprise Surveys Global Methodology. For example, for surveys which do not follow the Global Methodology, the Universe under consideration may have consisted of only manufacturing firms or the questionnaire used may have been different from the standard global questionnaire. Data users should exercise caution when comparing raw data and point estimates between surveys that did and did not adhere to the Enterprise Surveys Global Methodology. For surveys which did not adhere to the Global Methodology plus Afghanistan 2008, any inference from one of these surveys is representative only for the data sample itself.
    2. Regional and "all countries" averages of indicators are computed by taking a simple average of country-level point estimates. For each economy, only the latest available year of survey data is used in this computation. Only surveys, posted during the years 2009-2019, and adhering to the Enterprise Surveys Global Methodology are used to compute these regional and "all countries" averages.
    3. Descriptions of firm subgroup levels, e.g. how the ex post groupings are constructed, are provided in the Indicator Descriptions (PDF, 710KB) document.
    4. Statistics derived from less than or equal to five firms are displayed with an "n.a." to maintain confidentiality and should be distinguished from ".." which indicates missing values. Also note for three growth-related indicators under the "Performance" topic, these indicators are not computed when they are derived from less than 30 firms.
    5. Standard errors are labeled "n.c.", meaning not computed, for the following:

           1) indicators for all surveys that were not conducted using the Enterprise Surveys Global Methodology and

           2) for indicator breakdowns by ex post groupings: exporter or ownership type, and gender of the top manager.
    6. Please cite our data as follows:

      Enterprise Surveys (, The World Bank.