THE Confederation of Zimbabwe Industries (CZI) plans to invite industrial equipment manufacturers this quarter as part of its efforts to help local manufacturing firms replace antiquated equipment.
Old technology is costly to maintain hence it negatively impacts on domestic product competitiveness when compared to cheaper imports.
CZI says original equipment manufacturers’ delegations will be drawn from countries such as the United States, Britain, Italy, Germany, Brazil, China, India and Japan.
According to the CZI manufacturing sector survey for 2015 liquidity constraints and antiquated equipment are the two major causes of declining industrial capacity utilisation.
The survey indicates that productivity declined to 34,3 percent last year, from 36,5 percent in 2014.
Busisa Moyo, the CZI president said original equipment manufacturers will be accompanied by international financiers who can extend rescue packages to local companies to purchase the equipment.
“We’re going to have a special focus on original equipment manufacturers, which is an exhibition for international companies that make equipment for manufacturing focusing on technology,” said Moyo.
“Zimbabwe is 15 years behind in terms of technology so we want to invite those kinds of companies to talk to us and make presentations.
“Also coming to the exhibition will be financial institutions that can fund the purchase of the equipment. Therefore, there will be three stakeholders who’re the original equipment manufacturers, financiers and us the customers and this will be a platform for interface.”
Moyo said the industrial lobby group was in touch with the countries’ embassies and once the issues have been finalised the dates for the exhibitions will be announced.
Industry has set itself a target of ramping up capacity utilisation from the current 34, 6 percent to 65 percent by the end of next year.
Capacity utilisation has been declining over the years despite stabilisation of the economy brought about by the introduction of the multi-currency system.
A plethora of challenges among them weak domestic demand, high unemployment, widening trade deficit, weakening of the rand to the United States Dollar and the unreliable supply of utilities has rattled local industry resulting in falling capacity utilisation.