THE Zimbabwe International Trade Fair (ZITF) Company has introduced a specialised Infrastructure and Built Environment Exhibition called “AfriConfex”, whose inaugural edition is slated for October.
ZITF board chairman, Mr Busisa Moyo, announced the new service product in a press statement yesterday.
He said the event was expected to be an annual exhibition and is primed to be the country’s biggest gathering of buyers and sellers within the entire built environment value chain, creating a single platform for knowledge sharing across the different sectors, sub-sectors and segments.
The two-day event pencilled for 20-21 October will run under the theme, “Solid Foundation. Stronger Future — Exploring Linkages in the Infrastructure Value Chain.”
Mr Moyo said the theme rallies the industry and its stakeholders to engage in solution-oriented discourse and implement catalytic actions aimed at the success and growth of the sector.
“The ZITF Company is excited to announce its latest service offering, AfriConfex, an infrastructure and built environment conference and expo,” he said.
“Taking place at the Zimbabwe International Exhibition Centre in Bulawayo, from 20-21 October 2022, the event will be the country’s biggest gathering of buyers and sellers within the entire built environment value chain, creating a single platform for knowledge sharing across the different sectors, sub-sectors and segments within the value chain.”
The event is organised in partnership with the Ministry of Transport and Infrastructure Development and is being initiated at a time when the Government has embarked on several high impact infrastructural development projects aimed at achieving a middle-class economy by 2030.
“Investment in large-scale infrastructure projects has been and continues to be one of the cornerstones of Zimbabwe’s National Development Strategy (NDS1), which outlines our roadmap to achieve economic growth and stability.
“The private sector and Zimbabwean government’s drive to improve the country’s infrastructure to sustain growth in the manufacturing sector and expand municipal utilities will continue to contribute to the growth in construction spending,” added Mr Moyo.
To that end, Mr Moyo said it was imperative for a stand-alone exhibition outside the traditional Mine Entra where building and construction had previously been showcased.
“The inaugural AfriConfex will, therefore, provide a key platform for the sharing of local and regional experiences, technical knowledge exchange and a discussion of cross-cutting challenges, opportunities and learnings with a view of drawing up actionable resolutions to achieve industry and economic growth,” he said.
Mr Moyo said as indigenous contractors gear up to venture into regional and international markets, AfriConfex will provide dynamic, hands-on moments to stay ahead of trends, opportunities and risks such as technology trends, international labour markets and new legal backgrounds and regulations.
The inaugural event will, thus, feature discussions on topical issues affecting the industry that include construction industry policies and legal framework, financing construction projects, urban and rural road infrastructure development.
On preparations, Mr Moyo said there has been positive feedback from the market and key bodies in the sector — such as the Zimbabwe Construction Industry Association (ZCIA), Construction Industry Federation of Zimbabwe (CIFOZ) and the Zimbabwe Building Contractors Association (ZBCA) who have endorsed and pledged support.
“Overall, the outlook for AfriConfex looks very positive. With the support of the whole of industry, the ZITF Company looks forward to a fruitful and successful first edition,” said Mr Moyo.