FINANCIAL services institution, Stanbic Bank, has launched an exporter’s guide which gives a roadmap on how Zimbabwean companies can navigate the Chinese business terrain leveraging on the bank’s strategic partnerships in Africa and the world’s second largest economy.

The exporters guide was launched during a business conference which was part of Stanbic-China Day held last week as the bank stepped up efforts to facilitate trade between China and Zimbabwe.

During the first nine months of the year, Zimbabwe exported goods worth US$693,46 million and imported goods worth US$1,07 billion showing trade is heavily skewed in favour of the Asian giant. Zimbabwe's top export to China is tobacco.

The Industrial and Commercial Bank of China Limited is the largest shareholder in Stanbic’s South African headquartered parent company, Standard Bank.

Stanbic Bank head of trade and Africa China banking Tapuwa Nyika said the exporters guide was designed to showcase how Zimbabwean businesses can piggy-back on the financial services institution’s local and global strategic partners to enter into the Chinese market.

“Stanbic Bank considers Africa as its “calling card” and to that end, the institution is committed to play a pivotal role in championing Zimbabwe’s growth,” Nyika said.

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He said Stanbic Bank, through its parent company, had cemented itself as a universal bank as evidenced by its presence in 20 countries and 1 113 branches in Africa.

The exporters’ guide demonstrates how Stanbic is geared to drive Zimbabwe and Africa’s agri-business and become the leading Agribusiness bank in Zimbabwe and on the continent, Nyika said.

“We aspire to make a real difference in reducing food insecurity, solving for unemployment and helping grow the gross domestic products in the countries in which we operate,” Stanbic Bank Agribusiness head Tawanda Maposah said.

“We do this by supporting our agri-business clients' ecosystems, through deep sector expertise and driving sustainable agriculture.”

Maposah outlined five growth drivers that could be exploited in the continent, namely, infrastructure, technology, trade, foreign direct investment and processing, population growth, and climate change.

“Our partnership with the world’s biggest bank, the Industrial and Commercial Bank of China, has resulted in a powerful strategic collaboration that enables us to provide our customers with direct access to one of the world’s strongest economies,” he said.

“Not only has this partnership already grown trade and investment between Africa and China, but we also continue to work together on various initiatives to build and strengthen unique import and export propositions for increased business between Africa and China. Businesses are encouraged to proactively pursue China which is described as ‘the land of opportunity’.”