ILO, Sweden fund 27 environmentally friendly Zim businesses

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By Alois Vinga

THE International Labour Organisation (ILO), in partnership with the Swedish government, has committed to supporting the best 27 environmentally friendly Zimbabwean business project proposals which were selected through a rigorous adjudication process under the Green Enterprise Innovation project.

The 27 were selected out of over 90 submitted project proposals by participants from the country’s ten provinces.

Speaking to Business on the sidelines of a ceremony held to award the successful participants, Matte Sunnergren, an official with the embassy, said her government had availed funds to support the transformation of the proposed projects into viable businesses.

“My government has availed US$2.8 million for the Green Enterprize Innovation Project which kicked off in 2018. The three year programme will see these winners receiving a year’s support to set up their businesses,” she said.

Sunnergren said the support will enable the businesses to create jobs and employ young Zimbabweans who in turn, will support their families.

Also speaking at the same occasion, ILO country director, Hopolang Phororo said that the project aims to preserve the environment through encouraging young people to come up with business proposals that preserve the environment.

She said the second part of the project looks at skills development in order to see how greening issues can be addressed in the country.

“So we are working with a number of vocational training centres to make sure that when young people graduate, they will be sensitive to issues of the environment.

“The last part of it is then to look at Small to Medium Enterprises or even bigger enterprises to see how they can come up with green policies and other strategies which will sustain the environment…so this is really thought that the programme is important,” said Phororo.

Green Enter Prize and Innovation Development project seeks to contribute to solving a series of inter-related development problems such as high levels of youth employment, low levels of formal and growth oriented entrepreneurship with a bias towards the sustainability of the environment.