Zambia's President To Open ZITF

Officials from the ministry of media, information and publicity, said in a statement Tuesday, Sata would make a stop- over in Harare to meet President Robert Mugabe before proceeding to the Zimbabwe International Trade Fair (ZITF).

There will be state banquet at State House in his honour on Wednesday evening before the Zambian president leaves for Bulawayo on Thursday together with Mugabe.

Meanwhile South Africa’s Deputy Trade and Industry Minister, Elizabeth Thabethe, on Tuesday urged companies in her country to invest in Zimbabwe which she described as ‘a leading and key strategic partner’ in Southern Africa.

Thabethe said at the launch of South Africa’s pavilion at ZITF:

“Zimbabwe presents a developing market for a wide range of goods and services, such as mining, retail food and beverages, construction, agro-processing, chemicals, banking, medical services, hotels and leisure. South Africa is strategically placed to do business with Zimbabweans in these sectors”.

Businesses pleaded with the power utility, Zimbabwe Electricity Supply Authority (ZESA), to shelve power cuts during the trade showcase to woo foreign investors.

“Investors need assurance that their businesses would not be affected once they pour in their money,” said Obert Sibanda, the former chairperson of the Zimbabwe national Chamber of Commerce,in an interview.

Thirteen foreign countries are exhibiting at this year’s trade showcase with China as the largest exhibitor. The Chinese have also organised an investment seminar with locals to identify viable investment projects.

The Asian country is one of the major sources of foreign direct investment (FDI) for Zimbabwe and has one of the fastest growing economies.