By ZBC Reporter
ZIMBABWE is determined to increase trade with the United Arab Emirates after exports reached US$1.2 billion as of July this year.
The United Arab Emirates is ranked second among the country’s biggest trading partners and efforts are in place to further increase trade between the two countries.
This comes amid revelations that Zimbabwe’s exports to Dubai have gone up to US$1, 2 billion compared to US$800 million during the same period last year.
The figures were confirmed by ZIMTRADE chief executive officer Allan Majuru in an interview with ZBC News.
“Our Latest statistics up to July we are sitting at 1,2 billion compared to the previous year, where we were at 800 million, so our exports to Dubai have grown by 220 million as of July. We expect our exports to reach 2 billion by year-end last year the export earnings were at 1,7 billion,” said Majuru.
While gold and diamond account for the largest share of the exports to Dubai, the focus is now on horticulture given the high demand for Zimbabwe’s produce in that market.
“A lot of inroads have been made. In the horticulture sector, we have managed to get the small-scale farmers to sign five-year contracts to supply sugar snap peas and we also got them to sign contracts to supply berries. If you look at exports were mainly on minerals but we aim to promote value-added products,” Majuru said.
Zimtrade is also facilitating processes to pave way for goat exports to Dubai with abattoirs undergoing halal certification, a pre-requisite to supplying that market.
Plans are also underway to facilitate the export of marula oil to Dubai and the Mwenezi marula processing plant has since sent samples of their product.
During Expo 2020 Dubai, several players in the tourism sector expressed interest in exploring the country’s tourism industry.
Zimbabwe’s top envoy to the UAE, Ambassador Lovemore Mazemo says some of the buyers will be in the country for the Sanganai /Hlanganani World Tourism Expo.
“We have proposals for building hospitals. Pharmaceuticals, tourism, hotel and conference centres as well as resort development. I think I must also address the area of tourism where we will have tourism operators, writers and journalists coming to Sanganai. I must say the expo provided a lot of opportunities which we are now pursuing,” he said.
Zimbabwe is working on investing in the agriculture sector to ensure farmers are capacitated to meet export demand.