THE Zimbabwe International Trade Fair (ZITF) Company has completed its engagement with the country’s tax collector to ensure that foreign companies exhibiting at this year’s edition do not have hassles in bringing their goods into the country, an official has said.
Running under the theme, Harnessing Linkages for Industrial Development, the 58th edition of the ZITF runs from April 25 to 29 in Bulawayo.
ZITF Company board chairman Ruth Ncube said they had completed engagements with the Zimbabwe Revenue Authority (Zimra) and the department of Immigration to ensure that foreign exhibitors came in hassle-free.
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“With regard to our foreign participants, engagement with Zimra and the Department of Immigration has been completed. This will ensure smooth travel and clearance at our border posts,” Ncube said last week.
In previous editions, exhibitors faced challenges in bringing their goods through the country’s border posts, especially at the Beitbridge border.
Beitbridge is one of the busiest border posts in southern Africa, handling about 9 000 travellers into South Africa in a single ordinary day.
The figure sometimes soars to over 25 000 particularly during holidays.
The business community has expressed concern over the situation at the post, saying the long queues were seriously affecting the flow of business.
Ncube disclosed that they had also engaged electricity utility Zesa for uninterrupted supply of power.
“We have made a formal request to Zesa to make sure we are exempted from loads shedding a week prior, during and after the show,” she said.
Ncube said that about 90% of the available space at this year’s fair had been taken up.
“Bookings and enquiries continue to come on a daily basis from within Zimbabwe and abroad with a total of 41 000 square metres having been booked so far. This represents close to 90% of space taken, which is at par with the figures we had this time last year,” she said.
Foreign countries that have confirmed participation include Botswana, China, Ethiopia, Germany, Indonesia, Iran, Japan, Kenya, Malawi, Mozambique, South Africa and Turkey.
Highlights of the five-day event include the ZITF International Business Conference on April 26, organised in partnership with the National Economic Consultative Forum.
Vice-President Emmerson Mnangagwa will deliver the keynote address at the conference.
A forum on original equipment manufacturers will be held on April 27 in conjunction with the Confederation of Zimbabwe Industries.
The trade fair will also run concurrently with sector-specific expos—A’sambeni Africa Business Tourism Expo, Ultimate Home, Pakprint and Scholastica.