ZIMTRADE says it generated deals worth US$8 million from the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) following the outward trade mission held in that country in May this year.
The organisation took 15 companies to Lubumbashi and Kolwezi to promote their products and services.
Seed Co Limited and Lobels are some of the companies that participated.
Speaking to journalists on the sidelines of the Zimbabwe-DRC Business Forum held in Harare this week, ZimTrade chief executive officer Allan Majuru said DRC was one of their main targets due to its huge market.
“What we've deliberately done over the past couple of years, we've targeted DRC as a market,” Majuru said.
“We saw that trade between Zimbabwe and the DRC has been very low. And if you look at history, I think we have got good political relations. I think we go a long way, but we want those political relations to now have a dollar value to them.
“So, that's the reason why we did it. So, we started with going to what we call the DRC Mining Week in Lubumbashi where all DRC companies, even global ones, would come and do business.”
After that, Majuru said they did outward seller missions where they took several local firms to different provinces in the DRC.
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“So, we took them there and if I can say, focusing on this year when we went to Lubumbashi, Likasi and Kolwezi. These are three different provinces we managed to generate deals worth US$8 million for starters.”
Seed Co sales manager Masimba Kanyepi said DRC was full of potential waiting to be exploited.
“The business potential is very huge and it's endless because we are talking here of a country which has been relying mainly on imports — importing maize from Zambia and Zimbabwe, importing eggs from South Africa, importing almost everything. They just rely on imports when it comes to their food,” he said.
The DRC has shifted its focus towards Zimbabwe with a view of growing its agricultural base and diversifying its economy from the mining sector.