Zim to benefit more from Expo 2020 Dubai – The Herald

The Herald
Ivan Zhakata Herald Correspondent
ZIMBABWE is set for more benefits to boost its economy through engagements with investors at the ongoing Expo 2020 Dubai, who are keen on trading and investing in the country.
Zimbabwe Pavilion Commissioner General Ambassador Mary Mubi said several targets were already being met. Zimbabwe was looking for engagement, generating interest in the areas of investment, trade and visits, and to share ideas on innovation. 
The Expo started on October 1 this year and it will end on March 31 next year and it is running under the theme ‘Connecting Minds, Creating the Future.’
Ambassador Mubi said she believed that Zimbabwe continued to benefit from its presence at Expo 2020 Dubai.
“There have been a number of inquiries particularly in the investment and trade areas. There have been some investment inquiries which we have sent to the relevant authorities related to health and some are fairly urgent. Some enquiries are related to energy, both renewable and non-renewable, and agriculture.
“In agriculture I think one of the major interests is in the area of tea and coffee distribution, avocados, and information on the quantities that we have available. Some even inquired about instant porridge because we are showcasing some of these products in our retail store,” she said.
Ambassador Mubi said precious stones, leather, car industry, macadamia, pecan and ground nuts were some of the inquiries that they were getting.
 She said they have also had an inquiry about apples and mangoes that one buyer was interested in buying from Zimbabwe.
 “With respect to the investment sector, as I said, we have received some investment inquiries in health, energy, particularly renewable, agriculture and these inquiries we continue to send home,” Ambassador Mubi said.
 “Recently, we have had even a discussion with some Canadians who were interested in exchanging ideas on the production of organic fertiliser and there is a positive discussion between Zimbabwe Investment and Development Agency (ZIDA), Ministry of Lands, Agriculture, Fisheries, Water and Rural Development and the investor on the possibility of starting up something in Zimbabwe. Just this morning we had an inquiry from in somebody who was interested in airports, importation of sugar and precious minerals.
 “Over and above these I think there are also benefits that we have derived from attending because we have a team from several Ministries who have been very active in participating in other events that have been held by other countries and in trying to network on behalf of the country. We believe that there are potential areas of long term engagements in various areas. For example, one of the officers attended an event recently and the country was interested in networking around the investment hubs and some are interested in networking around innovation.”
 Ambassador Mubi said the team believed that the platforms have benefited the country and there was a need for support by the relevant institutions in Zimbabwe so that inquiries turn into reality.
“I have mentioned the issue of trade and of course with respect to visits we continue to get people who are interested particularly when they see the footage on the Victoria Falls and the Eastern Highlands and other places,” Ambassador Mubi said.
There are people who are interested in visiting these areas in Zimbabwe and we believe that those areas will be further amplified when we have events around issues of tourism later on at the beginning of the year where we will have people from the sector who will come and showcase the opportunities. In terms of upcoming events to be hosted by Zimbabwe, unfortunately, we were not able to meet the deadline for the Art exhibition which was supposed to be on December 5 but we did a Smart Cities event programme that kicked off our events programme followed by the mining programme where all the Ministers of the key sectors came with key players in their various sectors and we try to mobilise the investors in both sectors.”
 Ambassador Mubi said the event was affected by the travel ban which resulted in some people failing to come for the art exhibition. But the art exhibition will be put up sometime before the end of the year.
 “We are also looking forward to the opening up of the skies so that people who are supposed to come for the events can come and attend those we have organised that include the trade, tourism, and of course investment projects. We have a fairly busy schedule after the new year that we need to have a number of events and we believe those will be well attended and I am sure they will be well supported by the various sectors,” Ambassador Mubi said.
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