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Expo 2020 Dubai to rake in US$10m – The Herald

The Herald
Herald Reporters
Zimbabwe expects to rake in US$10 million through horticultural exports to the United Arab Emirates from deals struck during the ongoing Expo 2020 Dubai.
This was said by ZimTrade chief executive officer, Mr Allan Majuru when he appeared before the Portfolio Committee on Lands Agriculture, Fisheries, Water and Rural Resettlement.
Mr Majuru said they had sealed deals approximately worth US$2 million during the Expo.
“From the Expo we managed to get deals worth over US$2 million and by the end of the year we expect to make in excess of US$10 million through follow up deals,” he said.
He added that apart from exporting horticultural products, ZimTrade was also engaging potential investors from UAE to invest in production of horticultural products locally to secure supply.
Mr Majuru said the deals struck so far mostly benefitted small holder farmers.
At its peak Zimbabwe used to export US$300 million worth US horticultural products and Mr Majuru said efforts were being made to recapture the market.
The ZimTrade chief executive said the UAE had a US$2 billion horticultural market which Zimbabwe could take advantage of.
Mr Majuru said ZimTrade was working tirelessly to increase the country’s exports in line with the National Export Strategy launched by President Mnangagwa last year.
Last year Zimbabwe exported goods worth US$6 billion a 37 percent rise from the previous year.
The figure is expected to grow to US $7 billion by 2023 and ultimately US $14 billion by 2030.
Meanwhile, Mr Majuru told the Committee that Zimbabwe secured export deals worth over US $20 million at the Inter Africa Trade Fair held in Durban.
Philippines tourists Aileen and Angela Augustines are shown some of Zimbabwean’s products on display by an exhibitor Mr Stephen Gubi when they visted the Zimbabwean pavilion at the ongoing Expo 2020 Dubai in the United Arab Emirates yesterday. – Picture: Believe Nyakudjara
Meanwhile, Government has roped in top local artistes, Jah Prayzah and Sandra Ndebele, as it intensifies its Expo 2020 Dubai investment and trade campaign while Bulawayo’ popular ‘Songs of Lozikeyi’ production has been curated to drive the local opportunities momentum during the forthcoming National Day events slated for March 14.
The Intombi Zomqangala group, which is led by Ndebele, has already arrived in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) for scheduled pre-event performances while Jah Prayzah is billed to showcase the country’s unique creative talent on the main event.
President Mnangagwa will lead the proceedings on the National Day in which the whole Expo 2020 Dubai attention will be dedicated to celebrating Zimbabwe. Each country participant has such a dedicated day. The National Day or Honor Day for Zimbabwe will mark the crux of the country’s six-month long business marketing efforts at the platform, which has so far seen the country record key investment and trade enquiries after hosting of successful sectorial conferences,
Ambassador Mary Mubi, the Commissioner General of Zimbabwe Pavilion at Expo 2020 Dubai, has said.
In an interview here yesterday, National Arts Council of Zimbabwe (NACZ) director, Mr Nicholas Moyo, who also chairs the Zimbabwe Pavilion National Day Organizing Committee, said the country was going big on the significance of the creative and heritage industry hence the involvement of local artistes.
He said the selected artistes would play a huge role in amplifying the country’s campaign at the expo, which ends this month.
“In preparation for this day, the Government of Zimbabwe has been in partnership with the private sector and Intombi Zomqangala, the group that is led by Sandra Ndebele has arrived in Dubai,” said Mr Moyo.
“They are going to have performances on four days, which is the 8th, 9th, 10th and 11th, one performance every day and for us that is when we start distributing Zimbabwean flags when they are performing.
“We are talking about Zimbabwe building the pace and that’s what we are going to do on the National Day. We are also planning that on other day when they will not have many performances, that is, between 12 and 13th, they will be present at the pavilion and the ladies can come and be part of the pavilion exposition by Zimbabwe.”
Mr Moyo said the Songs of Lozikeyi performance, which caught President Mnangagwa’s attention during the Bulawayo Arts Festival last year, will be presented on the National Day, this time with an investment and trade slant.
“On the actual day when His Excellency the President of Zimbabwe is going to officiate the National Day, we will have two performances, the first performance is by Songs of Lozikeyi, a production that was premiered at the launch by His Excellency of the Bulawayo Arts Festival,” he said.
“The Songs of Lozikeyi is a production that brings artistes from various groups in Bulawayo who came together to do that programme.
“But what we have done is that this programme has been curated for Expo Dubai, so it’s no longer just about the Songs of Queen Lozikeyi, its now talking about Zimbabwe.”
According to the Ministry of Finance and Economic Development, the Government is targeting that the creative sector contributes about 3.5 percent to the country’s Gross Domestic Product.
“This means as a country we have come to a level where we have recognized the potential of the creative sector and coming to Dubai is going to boost this,” said Mr Moyo.
“We are not just talking about people coming to Zimbabwe but we are saying you can also purchase in Zimbabwe, we want to see many of our groups being able to export our heritage, culture and our arts and that makes the strength of industrializing our creative and cultural industry.”
Mr Moyo said in the Expo 2020 Dubai exposition the late revered and intriguing Ndebele Queen imagery was being used alongside Mbuya Nehanda, Kaguvi and Lobhengula’s significance, depicting that powerful influence that Zimbabweans can have on the global scene.
“We are saying we just didn’t have traditional leaders that led us but we also had women that were very strong in bringing up Zimbabwe and were influential in the politics of Zimbabwe at that time,” he said.
“The other components of the Songs of Lozikeyi is now talking about investments in Zimbabwe to say ‘welcome to Zimbabwe, the land of great people, a land of diverse opportunities’ and a place that people can visit, a land of tourism investment and human resource,” said Mr Moyo.
“So, it’s now curated to be relevant to the Expo, so that production is going to take place during the official opening of the National Day ceremony by the President.”
He said the day’s creative events will be capped by scintillating performances by Jah Prayzer later in the day where the “Kutonga kwaro” hit maker will be at the Dubai Millennium Stage where he is going to perform for one hour.
“For us we are ending the cultural events on a high note. The good thing is that it’s not just the Emirates people we are targeting but its people around the world that are going to attend on the day,” said Mr Moyo.
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