40 foreign firms for CZI congress Mr Sifelani Jabangwe
Mr Sifelani Jabangwe

Mr Sifelani Jabangwe

Dumisani Nsingo, Senior Business Reporter
ABOUT 40 international firms are expected to attend this year’s Confederation of Zimbabwe Industries (CZI) annual congress to be held in Bulawayo in September.

Indicative of positive investor sentiment about the country under the new dispensation, local captains of industry will have the opportunity to exchange views during the high-profile indaba and possibly seal production and trade deals.

CZI president Mr Sifelani Jabangwe revealed this during a media briefing in Bulawayo on Friday where he said the hosting of this year’s congress in the city was significant in the context of revitalisation of the manufacturing sector in the country in keeping with President Emmerson Mnangagwa’s middle income economy vision 2030. Major foreign firms will come from industrialised countries such as Turkey, Japan and India and some from Italy, he said.

According to the industry body, about 15 companies from India, 15 from Japan, 10 from Turkey and a delegation from Italy and Botswana have also indicated interest to attend the September congress.

“We are calling this a congress as well as an international investment forum and as such we will have visitors from Turkey, Japan and from India. We are also talking to our partner in Italy to see if they can also attend but those countries that I have spoken about will certainly have visitors,” said Mr Jabangwe.

“We will have sessions where the companies they are bringing along with them will be able to present what they are looking for and the partnerships that they are looking at doing with Zimbabwe.”

He said the gathering would give captains of industries an opportunity to share insights on how other countries have successfully turned around fortunes of their economy through industrialisation.

“We will try to understand how other countries, which have got huge endowments, have done very well in terms of turning around their economies,” said Mr Jabangwe.

This year’s congress, which is expected to be officially opened by President Mnangagwa, will run from September 26 to 28 under the theme: “From dialogue to implementation”.

Mr Jabangwe said the industrialisation agenda was the panacea to the country’s economic woes hence the industry body was pushing the enterprise development as the best defense against poverty.

“In our research we have found that all modern economies that are doing well are industrialised. So we are pushing that for us to develop as Zimbabwe, we need to industrialise and value add all the minerals and other endowments that we have,” he said.

Mr Jabangwe said during the congress, CZI would unpack its proposed industrialisation framework.

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