Govt to craft strategy to revive industry

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GOVERNMENT is yet to come up with a way forward to stop company closures and revive industry following a decade of hyper-inflation and economic stagnation, a government official said.

Taurai Mangudhla

Industry and Commerce minister Mike Bimha said his ministry, together with other government departments, was on the verge of completing a strategic document that will speak directly to industrial revival in the face of increasing company closures, downsizing and subsequent retrenchments.

He said government was fully aware of the alarming rate of company closures and job losses, hence the move to specifically craft a strategy.

“We are currently holding consultations with various stakeholders from both government and the private sector, so it is still currently work in progress,” Bimha said.

He said the new economic blueprint that was adopted by cabinet this week also speaks to the need to revive industry and tapped ideas from industry, government and investors.

“We, as a ministry have said we want to ensure companies keep operating and the blueprint talks about increasing capacity utilisation. If companies keep operating then there is no loss of jobs, and capacity utilisation growth means new jobs are created. We are addressing issues of employment and employment creation which is exactly what government wants to see,” added the minister.

Bimha said company closures and retrenchments were worrying government, hence the need for a lasting solution.

“We have been talking about this and we are committed to resolving the problems. The problem of de-industrialisation is there and more pronounced in Bulawayo but we will address it, even President (Robert) Mugabe said clearly that we as government want to restore industry back to its proper position,” he said.

Bimha’s comments come after the Independent last week reported a July 2013 National Social Security Authority Harare Regional Employer Closures and Registrations Report for the period July 2011 to July 2013 which showed that 711 companies in Harare closed down, rendering 8 336 individuals jobless.

A July 2013 Employment Confederation of Zimbabwe (EmCoz) report shows 1 100 individuals were retrenched in the first half of 2013 and were recorded at the Ministry of Labour and Social Welfare. The EmCoz report said Olivine Industries laid off 109 employees in the first quarter of 2013 and Interfin Bank retrenched 114 workers in the second quarter of 2013.

Major companies that have retrenched include platinum miners Zimplats and Unki, plus Bindura Nickel Corporation, Spar supermarkets, Dairibord, Cairns, Olivine Industries and PG Industries.

According to a Confederation of Zimbabwe Industries 2013 Manufacturing Sector Survey, lack of finance, policy inconsistencies, inadequate infrastructure, restrictive labour laws and government bureaucracy are the major hurdles for local business.

6 thoughts on “Govt to craft strategy to revive industry”

  1. TM says:

    VaBimha panenyaya apa. You are now formulating a strategy to partly address company closures? Is it a real strategy that you are formulating or it is a plain response to an issue that the government has been watching over the years?

  2. lion king says:

    a better way forward is the removal of sanctions from our minds and work harder to get help from proper friends.
    only the king should be quarrelling with his counterparts while nuts around must do some tougher work of building bridges that collapsed over the years.
    we cant all be singing while real work remains undone. someone is clearly very poor at establishing the necessary rapport behind the scenes dont you think so ?
    sanctions must go now from all knights minds. work beckons not politicking.

  3. Musona says:

    What a bunch of morons ZanuPF are! They rig elections but are clueless on what to do next. That is the down side of rigging. The easier part is to rig elections but reviving industry is a totally different ballgame. We are watching. ZanuPF has spent over a decade chasing away those who built the roads we travel on, those who built the houses we live in, those who built the industries we used to work in and replaced them with primary school dropouts commonly called war veterans who haven’t a clue what to do. Those in ZanuPF should ask themselves why it is that a few thousand whites were able to sustain millions of blacks and make Rhodesia, a very small country, the second most prosperous country, after S Africa, in Africa. Everything worked like clockwork in Rhodesia despite the UN trade sanctions against Rhodesia.

  4. david maoko says:

    against the trend that the skilled migrate, like the capitalised. if it’s genuine, it may never fail. only that we know angori manyautsamukanwa. since when have the comrades really built? they do propaganda. it’s regrettable the sons and daughters that the republic generated during the first twenty years are healing the Britons, teaching south Africans and building and investing in south Africa. tell them to come home and they will show you the middle finger. talk, talk and lie. kandi mpofu akapuhwa muraidzo wetoll money? it must be so sweet and there must be no need to account.

  5. Machekabuwe says:

    I do appreciate it seeing the President in business and employing Zimbabweans at his Gushungo Holdings. I think that his investment in a Dairy-farm, a sub-sector where locals have not had a significant presence is something worth emulating. It would be a good thing to see more of our political leaders making it as business men as well. I think a politician who is successful in business has something at stake when it comes to protecting the economy, hopefully fighting for the common good as s/he seeks to lobby for her/his business interest as well. I am not sure of the merits of having a poor politician in power.

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