Home Buyzim 24 Buy Zimbabwe Chairman Calls for Economic Transformation Amidst Trade Deficit Challenges

Buy Zimbabwe Chairman Calls for Economic Transformation Amidst Trade Deficit Challenges

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In a resounding call for economic transformation, Buy Zimbabwe Chairman Munyaradzi Hwengwere urged stakeholders to unite in support of local industries amidst significant trade deficit challenges facing the nation. Speaking at the 13th Buy Zimbabwe Annual Awards, Hwengwere emphasized the gravity of Zimbabwe’s economic situation, citing a cumulative trade deficit of USD 6.8 billion over the past four years.

Addressing attendees, Hwengwere likened Zimbabwe’s economic struggle to the Mount Kilimanjaro challenge faced by a group of 22 Zimbabweans chronicled in colleague Steve Ndiyamba’s book, “One Week in December”. He emphasized the need for ordinary citizens to overcome their fears and limitations, drawing parallels to the barriers hindering Zimbabwe’s economic progress.

Despite daunting trade deficits, Hwengwere expressed optimism, pointing to significant strides made in promoting locally made products. He highlighted the increase in local goods on supermarket shelves from less than 10 percent to over 60 percent in the past decade, attributing this progress to collaborative efforts between government, corporates, and consumers.

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Hwengwere called on all stakeholders to take decisive action, outlining key steps to address the trade deficit and promote local industries. These include reducing the import bill, prioritizing locally made products in public procurement, and incentivizing companies investing in local content. He stressed the importance of seizing opportunities presented by the African continental free trade area to ensure Zimbabwe’s competitiveness on the global stage.

The Buy Zimbabwe Chairman commended companies that have excelled in promoting local industries, describing them as the “heroes of our struggle, the 4th Chimurenga”. He pledged continued support from Buy Zimbabwe to reinforce consumer preference for local products, advocate for favorable tax policies, and ensure implementation of procurement practices with stipulated local content thresholds.

The speech underscored a unified commitment towards economic revitalization, with Hwengwere likening the Buy Zimbabwe Annual Awards to the country’s “own local Oscars”. He emphasized the importance of impeccable judging standards to measure Zimbabwe’s progress against global benchmarks, reaffirming the nation’s resolve to overcome economic challenges and promote sustainable growth.

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