The United States embassy in collaboration with the American Business Association in Zimbabwe is in the process of assembling a delegation of local business leaders to attend a US-Africa Business Summit in Washington later this year.
The summit is scheduled for October 5 to 7.
US ambassador to Zimbabwe Charles Ray last week said the summit will have a day-long seminar on “Doing Business in Zimbabwe” expected to reach over 250 American firms and government officials.
“These kinds of activities are only going to continue as we move forward. And, again, we are eager to work closely with the business community and the Zimbabwean government across the political spectrum to find new and collaborative ways to build on these efforts for the mutual benefit of our two countries,” said Ray.
“And, let me just affirm that, beyond the political and economic engagement that I have detailed already, the US will continue with our ‘bread and butter’ activities and partnerships with the Zimbabwean people.”
Ambassador Ray said the US continued to raise awareness among the American private sector of the huge opportunities that existed for both countries through expanded trade and investment relations.
He said the embassy was doing its best to publicise business opportunities in the country as indicated by the recent hosting of a trilateral business dialogue in conjunction with the Corporate Council on Africa and Business Unity South Africa, where over a dozen firms from the US, South Africa and Zimbabwe met in Victoria Falls to discuss opportunities for business locally.
Some of the companies that attended the event included Microsoft, Proctor and Gamble, PricewaterhouseCoopers, Cargill and General Electric, among others.
Ambassador Ray said the US had a highly successful loan guarantee programme to pump much needed capital back into the agricultural sector to promote food security and help return the country to its rightful status as breadbasket of the region.
“We are working in the dairy, poultry, coffee, tea and niche horticulture sectors to add value to produce at the local level and establish market linkages within Zimbabwe and outside,” said Ray.
“We are working within the Kimberley Process to reach a consensus agreement to allow for Zimbabwe to export certified diamonds from Marange while ensuring that the workers and local communities’ rights are respected,” he added.