Curtain comes down on Harare, Bulawayo dominated fair

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THE 58th edition of the Zimbabwe International Trade Fair (ZITF) ended in Bulawayo on Saturday with Harare and Bulawayo exhibitors taking almost the entire exhibition space.
Addressing journalists at the end of the trade expo Saturday, Industry and Commerce minister, Mike Bimha said a total exhibition space of 43,595 square metres was taken up during the five-day annual business showcase.
He said this year’s fair was compact, with 91% of space made available for sale.
“We had a total of 706 exhibitors taking up space. Of these, 37 were direct exhibitors whilst 339 were indirect exhibits,” Bimha said.
He added: “13 foreign nations took part in this year’s show. The countries were represented by 14 direct foreign exhibitors and 44 indirect exhibitors.”
The minister said the calibre of this year’s exhibition was high compared to previous years despite the decline in foreign participation.
“The calibre of this year’s business visitor was also quite high as we had a significant number of senior level business executives and representation from the highest echelons of government.
“Exhibitors were also quite satisfied with the quality of their interactions. Preliminary survey results show that 93% of our exhibitors met with their target customers and 87% received prospects for future sales,” said the minister.
Bimha said a total of 59% of the exhibitors came from Harare while 30% came from Bulawayo and the remainder from other cities and towns.
The minister said a total number of 3,200 business visitors visited the trade fair during the business days of the expo. 
The trade fair was officially opened by Namibian President, Hage Geingob on Friday.
It was also held at a time many local firms were facing distress due to the prevailing cash crunch which was affecting their customer base with many also forced to close shop due to a harsh operating environment.Advertisement