Nzenza vowed to reduce imports

INDUSTRY and Commerce minister Sekai Nzenza

INDUSTRY and Commerce minister Sekai Nzenza on Thursday said the government was aiming at reversing the importation of raw materials to focus on value-addition, which promotes local production.

Officially opening the Zimbabwe National Chamber of Commerce 2022 annual congress in Victoria Falls, Nzenza said the country had adopted the value-chain approach to encourage economic growth.

“Zimbabwe has adopted the value-chain approach learning from international best practice as we endeavour to attain our national industrial objectives. Indeed, greater strides are being accomplished in different sectors as we take a value-chain centred approach in industrialisation,” she said.

“We aim to reverse the importation of raw materials and focus more closely on value-addition where we promote local production. Of course, as government, our role is to facilitate and creating that enabling environment where business can thrive. We are looking at the ease of doing business and already we can see some changes,” Nzenza said.

“You look at cement industry that is a booming industry supporting the downstream and upstream infrastructure development,” she said.

The minister said the government was working hard to improve ease of doing business in the country, particularly on the border posts

“It now takes 20 minutes for a truck to go through the border (Beitbridge Border Post)  where it used to take two to three days,” she said.

With the global pressures filtering into the domestic economy, Nzenza said it has been difficult to predict future prospects.

“Some of the challenges is the currency matter. We have been told that government has policy inconsistencies and I do accept that as a challenge,” she said.

The minister said as a ministry they were concerned by the rise of prices in the country, particularly of basic goods.