2nd Republic policies bearing fruit

Minister Mutsvangwa

Concerted measures by the Government to support industry, including macro-economic stability, have seen positive performances being recorded in the manufacturing sector resulting in increased exports, a rise in capacity utilisation and volumes of locally produced goods, as the Second Republic walks its talk of modernising and industrialising the economy.

Through the “Zimbabwe is open for business” mantra, the Government has been pursuing strategies that include tax rebates, granting Special Economic Zones status, and introducing the domestic currency, among others, which have paid dividends as the economy is now on growth trajectory.

This was said by Information, Publicity and Broadcasting Services Minister, Monica Mutsvangwa, yesterday during a post-Cabinet briefing in Harare.

She said Zimbabwe had achieved remarkable modernisation and industrialisation milestones under the “Moving the Economy up the Value Chain and Structural Transformation” pillar of the National Development Strategy 1 (2021-2025), as presented by Industry and Commerce Minister, Dr Sekai Nzenza, in her State of Industry Report to Cabinet. 

“Strategies which Government is pursuing to spur industry and commerce growth include the following: improved access to funding by industry, implementation of the Local Content Strategy, promoting ease of doing business, economic empowerment, consumer protection, and the quality assurance programme. 

“Furthermore, the following strategies have benefited industry; tax rebates, granting of Special Economic Zones status, introducing the domestic currency, support to the plastic industry, and provision of land with title deeds to businesses domiciled in rural areas,” said Minister Mutsvangwa.

Going forward, the Industrial Development Corporation of Zimbabwe (IDCZ) will work closely with innovation hubs and industrial parks to commercialise value chains in the national interest.

Minister Mutsvangwa said Zimbabwe’s industrial sector remains highly diversified comprising 94 sub-sectors, producing about 6 000 products.

She said the sector was also highly integrated with the rest of the economy.

“Government’s concerted measures to support industry, including macro-economic stability, have resulted in positive performance being recorded in manufacturing, as follows: the contribution of the value of the manufacturing sector to the country’s total value-added products increased from 15,7 percent in 2019 to 18,4 percent in 2021, and is ranked third after agriculture and mining, manufactured exports have increased in value from US$324 million in 2021 to US$366 million in 2022, with most exported products being food, manufactured tobacco, textiles and packaging, capacity utilisation increased from 47 percent in 2020 to 66 percent in 2022,” said Minister Mutsvangwa.

“The volumes of locally produced goods in retail shops increased from 40 percent in 2017 to 85 percent in 2022. In terms of product research, innovation, development and commercialisation, new commodities are now being locally produced on a commercial basis, such as tick-grease for cattle (Contratik), grain protectants (Chamboko and Chikwapuro), cough syrup, water treatment chemicals, Covid-19 personal protective equipment (sanitisers, surgical masks, swabs, aprons, and tyvek suits), oxygen, and agricultural lime.”

Minister Mutsvangwa said the manufacturing sector’s strong performance has also been buoyed by significant investments due to the conducive environment for sustainable private-sector operations created by the Second Republic, which it continues to enhance under the “Zimbabwe is open for business” mantra. 

Some significant investments that have come include Varun Beverages plant and equipment expansion in Harare, the US$600 million investment by Delta Corporation in new manufacturing plant and equipment, Bakers Inn equipment expansion in Bulawayo, Kefalos dairy processing plant commissioned in Mhondoro, the Mega Market milling plant commissioned in Mutare, US$5,9 million investment in plant and machinery by Bata Shoe Company in the Midlands Province, US$11 million investment in plant upgrade by Sable Chemicals in Kwekwe, and Pretoria Portland Cement’s (PPC) Colleen Bawn plant in Matabeleland South Province has a clinker production capacity of 650 tonnes per annum, which translates to one million tonnes of cement per annum.

The commerce sector presently accounts for 60 percent of the industry contribution to Gross Domestic Product, with e-commerce taking precedence in the retailing industry.

The wholesale and retail sectors have witnessed massive expansion, notable among which is the establishment of the US$20 million state-of-the-art Highland Park Shopping Mall in Harare, said Minister Mutsvangwa.

“The strong performance in the industry and commerce sector demonstrates that the Second Republic led by His Excellency the President, Cde ED Mnangagwa, is walking its talk in industrialising and modernising the economy as well as economic growth. 

“Cabinet would like to advise that the State of Industry Booklet detailing performance in the industry and commerce sector is available for public reference.”

President Mnangagwa had pledged to transform the doing business environment to attract new investors while allowing existing investments to expand their operations.

Herald

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