Walter Nyamukondiwa, Harare Bureau
PRESIDENT Emmerson Mnangagwa says his Government is preparing for a massive industrialisation and modernisation of the economy underpinned by a new thinking in wealth creation.
The Head of State and Government and Commander-in-Chief of the Zimbabwe Defence Forces said this in an acceptance speech at his installation as Second Chancellor of Chinhoyi University of Technology (CUT) in Chinhoyi yesterday.
He said Zimbabwe, with an empowered young population armed with critical skills in innovation, entrepreneurship and creativity, should compete in the global village.
The market, he said, yearned for finished products as technological advancement now anchors economic development.
“Globalisation has increased competition in the world and Zimbabwe has to continue to produce quality graduates in the education sector if we are to keep pace and remain relevant in the economic development race,” said President Mnangagwa.
“The need to provide the market with finished products cannot be overemphasised as the world has grown fiercely competitive since technological advancement has become synonymous with economic development.”
Cde Mnangagwa said there was a need to keep up with global developments and prepare young people to face the challenges and jealously guard natural resources.
“Chinhoyi University of Technology indeed is a young and vibrant institution favoured with a special mandate to lead industrial development and the nurturing of entrepreneurship, innovation and creativity,” he said.
“These objectives are in tandem with our new thrust as Government to empower our young people with critical skills that will drive industrialisation and modernisation of the economy and inculcate a new thinking in wealth creation, innovation and entrepreneurship.”
He said through universities such as CUT, the country must develop technological capabilities and capacities to process, beneficiate and add value to its natural resources.
The country, President Mnangagwa said, needs a pool of dedicated scientists, technologists, engineers and other specialists to steer industry.
These will keep the country abreast with current trends and practices, thereby stimulating economic development.
This comes as the international community is warming up to President Mnangagwa’s new administration, with prospects for increased cooperation to support the country’s economic development.
The President hailed CUT for helping develop technologies to ease the shortage of equipment and improve productivity of farmers in both crops and livestock.
Universities should focus on new design concepts, research and development of new technologies and systems that have an impact in industry and commerce.
“As we engage the world, it is of great importance to have our own home-grown solutions to develop our economy and benchmark ourselves with the best in the global village,” he said.
The President has hit the ground running by making key interventions designed to stabilise the country’s economy and create a platform for job creation.
CUT vice chancellor Professor David Simbi said universities were key enablers in the country’s drive to industrialise and modernise by developing appropriate technologies.
“There is a need to innovate and build prototype technology and engineering equipment relevant to goods and service needs of Zimbabwe as it battles to build a viable industrial manufucturing base,” he said.
The equipment, he said, should support the country’s agricultural programmes such as Command Agriculture, which is helping restore the country as the breadbasket of the region.