Michael Magoronga, Midlands Correspondent
THE Zambian market is ripe for Zimbabwe’s exports and companies involved in manufacturing mining equipment stand a better chance to reap more from the neighbouring country, ZimTrade, has said.
The trade development and promotion agency carried out market research in Zambia in June this year to identify export opportunities as the country seeks to increase forex earnings.
Speaking during a breakfast meeting with exporters in the Midlands province, ZimTrade regional manager Mr Similo Nkala said Zambia was an emerging force in the mining sector, which presents an opportunity for local mining equipment suppliers.
“We are meeting existing and potential exporters here in the Midlands province and urging you to explore the Zambian market. The country has one of the fastest growing mining industries and given that Zimbabwe is tried and tested in that area, companies should, therefore, pounce on the opportunity there,” he said.
Mr Nkala said ZimTrade had targeted the Midlands province given that it was a mineral resources hub, which had a lot of mining companies.
“Here in the Midlands I know there are so many companies to do with mining, if you go to Zambia today, you will have a lot of opportunities waiting and I tell you, you will never go wrong. That is why we targeted specific sectors and as for this province I know it’s mostly about mining supplies and equipment,” he said.
Mr Nkala also said by going province by province, ZimTrade was looking at boosting the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) at provincial level in line with the devolution drive.
“We are looking at increasing exports by province so that we also boost the province’s GDP in accordance with the devolution principle. We look at key value chains, which we then try to assist either through technical intervention programmes or market information or assisting local companies to attend regional workshops and trade fairs,” said Mr Nkala.
The call comes after the signing of a memorandum of understanding between Zambian and Zimbabwean mining bodies who have pledged to assist each other in the mining sector. Recently, the Zimbabwe Miners’ Federation (ZMF) signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the Small-Scale Miners Association of Zambia (SSMAZ), which will see the two entities sharing experiences on the small-scale mining sector. Companies from across the province attended the seminar with some indicating that they were at advanced stages of entering the Zambian market.