Value chain focus to drive industrial development

26 Nov, 2021 - 00:11 0 Views
Value chain focus to drive industrial development

The Chronicle

Business Reporter
ZIMBABWE has made a commitment to prioritise crafting of policies that drive value chain processes across all economic sectors in order to increase momentum to the ongoing national industrialisation efforts.

This came out during a two-day workshop held recently that was supported by the Sub-Regional Office (SRO) for Southern Africa’s (SA) United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (ECA) for Zimbabwean experts to develop an Action Plan on alignment and harmonisation of regional and national frameworks on industrialisation in Zimbabwe.

According to a joint statement by Zimbabwe’s Ministry of Industry and Commerce and ECA, the action plan is being developed as part of support under the United Nations’ 12th tranche project, which is aimed at accelerating industrial development and economic integration in Southern Africa by enhancing the capacity of regional member States to develop and implement harmonised natural-resource based industrialisation policies, frameworks and  strategies.

To anchor the development of action plans and the support to member States, SRO-SA commissioned an analytical study on alignment and harmonisation of regional and national frameworks on industrialisation, and national domestication of regional strategies and policies to support industrial development in Southern Africa, focusing on Malawi, Zambia and Zimbabwe.

Mr Dayford Nhema, director — industry development in the Ministry of Industry and Commerce, at the meeting underlined the need to revive the manufacturing sector in   Zimbabwe.

“Manufacturing used to be the leading sector in the economy in terms of contribution to GDP, formal employment and foreign exchange earnings through exports, but has declined in recent years,” he said.

The official noted that the Zimbabwe development agenda was guided by the National Development Strategy (2021-2025) whose key priorities include, “the development and strengthening of value chains and structural transformation and complemented by the country’s National Industrial Development Policy”.

ECA Sub-regional office for Southern Africa officer in charge and chief of sub-regional initiatives section, Isatou Gaye said the existence of Southern African Development Community (Sadc) and the Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (Comesa) industrialisation strategies would anchor   industrial growth and diversification in the sub-region and is important for supporting regional development.

She added that: “both RECs have prioritised industrialisation as a precursor to enhanced, diversified and transformed economies”.

Mr Oliver Maponga, ECA economic affairs officer said the workshop’s objectives were to finalise and prioritise the recommendations of the study and develop an implementation plan with specific deliverables and nominated champions.

The group work, facilitated by Professor Albert Makochekanwa, deliberated on five thematic areas in proposing a draft implementation plan with the broader plans being the partial implementation of reviewed Industrialisation Oriented Policies and Strategies (IOPSs) and other supportive policy and legal frameworks.

Others include limited information on value chains and the need to cooperate with key stakeholder and the need to carry out awareness rising and address infrastructural, institutional and financial constraints to add value and develop value  chains, has resulted in weak co-operation among all key stakeholders.

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