International relations

SA firms head for Zimbabwe trade fair

23 April 2012

Deputy Trade and Industry Minister Elizabeth Thabethe will lead a group of South African companies to the Zimbabwe International Trade Fair taking place in Bulawayo from Tuesday to Saturday.

Thabethe said in a statement on Monday that it was important for South Africa, in its push for sustainable economic development and investment in the wider southern African region, to pursue partnerships with Zimbabwe.

She added that the Fair, with its strong international orientation, would offer regional and international business contacts to the South African exhibitors.

"They will also get an opportunity to market their products and services, increase their market knowledge of Zimbabwe, increase exports of South African manufactured goods and services, obtain trade leads, and generate export orders," Thabethe said.

"Also, by establishing their presence in Zimbabwe, South African companies will be able to access other markets in the Southern African Development Community (SADC) region like Zambia, Democratic Republic of Congo and Angola."

The companies exhibiting at the Fair have received financial assistance from the Department of Trade and Industry DTI through its Export Marketing and Investment Assistance (EMIA) Scheme, which seeks to develop export markets for South African value-added products and services and to recruit new foreign direct investment into the country.

According to the DTI, the Zimbabwe International Trade Fair is one of the largest intra-regional and multi-sectoral trade fairs south of the Sahara.

In 2011 the fair attracted 729 exhibitors, 139 of whom were foreign exhibitors from Botswana, Indonesia, Pakistan, Egypt, Kenya, Germany, Malawi, Turkey, Ghana, Mozambique, Zambia, Iran and Namibia. 146 646 visitors passed through the Bulawayo International Exhibition Centre's turnstiles to attend the exhibition.

"The recovery of the Zimbabwean economy since the advent of dollarization three years ago has seen demand for exhibition space from international exhibitors growing considerably," the DTI said.

SAinfo reporter


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