Innocent Ruwende Harare Bureau
FORMER Real Madrid and Chelsea Football Club manager Jose Mourinho and American businesswoman and Facebook spokesperson Randi Zuckerberg are set to visit the country to address government officials and businesspeople during an investment indaba scheduled for Bulawayo in May.
Binder contracts have already been signed by the organisers of the conference, Highshot Provisions, and Zuckerberg, a multi-millionaire and sister to Facebook founder and chief executive Mark Zuckerberg.
Mourinho has also signed a contract which was seen by our Harare Bureau.
Mourinho, who has been named world best manager a record four times, is widely regarded as one the greatest and most successful managers in the world. He will address delegates on sport development, cohesion and opportunities as well as using sports to develop communities, create business opportunities and social inclusion.
Zuckerberg, a former director of Market Development, will deliver a talk on the key lessons from Facebook in building a multi-billion dollar tech company.
Event organiser Ntokozo Msipa said all was in place for the two visitors and binder contracts were signed last week for them to visit the country during the Zimbabwe International Trade Fair week.
“We’ve signed binder contracts with all our international speakers including Ms Randi Zuckerberg and Jose Mourinho. All their itineraries are set for them to attend this very important conference,” he said.
Other speakers include Sony Kapoor, the chairman of the Banking Stakeholder Group of the European Banking Authority, who has served as a Visiting Fellow at the European Commission dealing with economic governance, financial reform and the Euro crisis.
He was also a member of the panel advising the European Parliament’s special committee on the crisis.
Former Sky News business editor Michael Wilson will present his thoughts on enhancing the investment climate in Zimbabwe, while The Tangled World and Two Speed World publisher Gerald Ashley makes it on the list of speakers who also include several government ministers and businesspeople.
In December last year, Highshot Provisions brought Chinese billionaire William Ding to the country.
Ding, who addressed the Local Government Economic Development Forum 2015 in Bulawayo, also explored investment opportunities in the property sector.
A number of high-profile businesspeople have visited Zimbabwe recently among them Nigerian billionaire Aliko Dangote who has a net worth of over $18 billion according to Forbes Magazine.
He announced his decision to invest in power generation, coal mining and cement manufacturing during his visit last year.
Chinese President Xi Jinping also visited the country in December 2015 last year.
On his visit, landmark deals worth $4 billion were signed between Zimbabwe and China which will convert provisions of the government’s economic blueprint, Zim-Asset, into programmes of action.
The two nations signed 12 investment agreements covering different sectors of the economy.
The deals include financing for the expansion of Hwange Power Station, construction of a new Parliament building and a pharmaceutical warehouse, expansion of a national fibre optic broadband project and provision of wildlife monitoring equipment.