ZITF 2019 ends on a high

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Bulawayo Correspondent

The 60th edition of the Zimbabwe International Trade Fair (ZITF) ended in Bulawayo on Saturday with preliminary survey results indicating that 90 percent of the exhibitors established new business links during the five-day business showcase.

Addressing journalists on Saturday, Industry and Commerce Minister, Mangaliso Ndlovu said in terms of quality products and attendance, this year’s event was highly successful.

“From all accounts, ZITF 2019 has been a highly successful show in terms of the quality of products on show, attendance numbers and the level of nation-building discussions that we engaged upon.

This trade showcase provided a unique platform to identify catalytic actions necessary for progress on trade, investment, infrastructural development and industrial growth in line with the country’s guiding policy document TPS and its vision for an upper middle income economy by 2030,” said Minister Ndlovu.

The minister said space utilisation for this year was also very high compared to last year.

“In terms of space utilisation, this year’s show was well subscribed with exhibitors occupying a total of 53,710 square metres which represents 100 % of the space made available for sale. We had over 808 exhibitors taking up space. Of these, 503 were direct exhibitors whilst 305 were indirect exhibitors,” he said.

Last year, a total of 47 000 square meters was utilised by exhibitors, representing about 91 %.

The minister said during the three days trading period, approximately 7 767 business visitors walked through the exhibition centre.

“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. 60 % of exhibiting companies received local orders during the show while 30% received export orders and 60 % received prospects for future sales,” he said.

The minister also said the ZITF business conference hosted in conjunction with the National Economic Consultative Forum on Wednesday was also a success.

Ugandan President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni officially opened this year’s premier trade showcase whose theme was “Propagating Industrial Growth through Trade and Investment”.