Zim reaping Expo 2020 Dubai spoils

28 Apr, 2022 - 00:04 0 Views
Zim reaping Expo 2020 Dubai spoils Vice President Chiwenga yesterday officially opened the ZITF International Business Conference. In the picture he is joined by Ministers Dr Sekai Nzenza (left) and Bulawayo Provincial Affairs and Devolution Minister Judith Ncube, National Assembly Speaker Jacob Mudenda (right) and ZITF board chair Busisa Moyo (far left)

The Herald

Prosper Ndlovu Bulawayo Bureau

ZIMBABWE is receiving a significant number of investment enquiries in different sectors of the economy as a positive outcome of the country’s participation at the recent Expo 2020 Dubai that was hosted by the United Arab Emirates (UAE).

Vice President Dr Constantino Chiwenga revealed this in Bulawayo yesterday while addressing delegates who attended the 2022 International Business Conference (IBC) which is running concurrently with the Zimbabwe International Trade Fair.

The six-month long expo ended on March 31, 2022, and saw Zimbabwe putting up a solid investment and trade campaign, which yielded several business deals worth millions of dollars in key sectors while more expressions of interest that require comprehensive follow ups have also been secured.

President Mnangagwa led the final leg of the national campaign when he visited Dubai in March where he met several business delegations including Zimbabweans in the Diaspora. He also headlined the national day activities on March 14.

VP Chiwenga, several Government ministers and private sector leaders also joined hands to position Zimbabwe as a favourable global investment destination and took advantage of the platform to market Brand Zimbabwe.

“At this Forum, we managed to sell the Zimbabwe brand by presenting the investment opportunities that are abound in the agriculture, mining, infrastructure development, manufacturing, tourism, ICTs and financial services sectors,” said Dr Chiwenga.

“Following that attendance, we are already receiving a significant number of investment enquiries in different sectors of the economy.

“As part of the commitment at the highest political level and on the sidelines of the 2020 Dubai Expo, I led a delegation to the Global Business Forum for Africa.”

The UAE has recently emerged as Zimbabwe’s top trading partner after South Africa, with annual trade gains estimated at about US$1,5 billion in favour of Zimbabwe.

Led by Zimbabwe Pavilion Commissioner-General, Ambassador Mary Mubi, the country exhibited its unique products and services under the Opportunities Cluster, competing with 191 other states who participated at the global expo. In her closing remarks, Amb Mubi said Zimbabwe scored major milestones during Expo 2020 Dubai, with more lessons for future engagements.

She described the six months expo as a fairly packed journey and said Zimbabwe had clear objectives, one of which was to re-engage and engage in an effort to be part and parcel of the national programme of re-engagement and engagement. “The other objective was to get the interest of investors and also trade, increasing our trade volumes with respect to our products,” said Amb Mubi then.

“We participated under the Opportunities Cluster because we were very much aware the country has huge potential and incredible opportunities in various sectors.”

In that regard, Dr Chiwenga noted that the renewed investment interests were in response to Government’s commitment to the continued implementation of business-friendly policies, as well as ease of doing business reforms.

As such, he said boosting domestic and foreign investment in the country is one of the Second Republic’s top priorities, driven by President Mnangagwa’s mantra: “Zimbabwe is Open for Business”.

VP Chiwenga said such positive developments, among other milestones being recorded at home, were indicative of the fact that the economy is poised to register positive growth.

He said the on-going revival of the Zimbabwe Iron and Steel Company (Zisco), which feeds into a number of downstream industries, as well as the construction of one of Africa’s biggest steel plants in Mvuma, for instance, were also expected to boost growth momentum in the medium to long term.

“The investors are confident of finishing the first phase of the programme within the next two years. The establishment of the steel company will result in the creation of over 6 000 direct jobs, a huge benefit to the economy,” said the VP.

The oversubscribed business conference ran on the sidelines of the 62nd edition of the Zimbabwe International Trade Fair (ZITF), and shared the same theme, which is: “Re-think, Re-imagine, Re-invent Value Chains for Economic Development”.

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