Story by Davison Vandira
ZIMBABWE is part of the “Let’s Build One Africa” Business Forum currently underway in Cape Town, South Africa where authorities are looking at ways of accelerating the implementation of the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA).
The high-level panel engagements in South Africa have been graced by Pan African and global business leaders, who are discussing the economic potential of the “One African Market” through increasing intra-Africa trade under the AfCFTA initiative.
Intra-Africa trade is currently at a disappointing 15 percent, despite the continent boasting of a massive market and a human capital base of 1.2 billion people with an estimated Gross Domestic Product of not less than 3.1 trillion united states dollars.
Notwithstanding this huge economic potential, Africa in general, and Zimbabwe, in particular, have not benefited and have remained net importers of goods.
The minister of Industry and Commerce, Dr. Sekai Nzenza this Monday highlighted how Zimbabwe is strengthening its manufacturing value chains to increase productivity and enhance access to markets.
“From a Zimbabwean perspective the government has been very supportive, especially to women-led business and it’s time for our local businesses to transform from SMEs to big corporates,” said Minister Nzenza.
“This is the only way that we can compete in a free trade area and as Zimbabwe we have our own competitive advantages that we are taking advantage of and we are calling authorities to continue supporting Industry financially to excel,” she went on.
Zimbabwe is looking to maximise the opportunities that abound within the African continent by exploiting the market presented by AfCFTA.