BULAWAYO, May 6 (The Source) — Bulawayo mayor Martin Moyo is set to visit China this month in a bid to woo investors from that country to revive the city’s ailing manufacturing sector, council minutes have shown.
Zimbabwe’s second largest city, once the country’s manufacturing hub, has seen over 100 companies close in recent years with its perennial water problems cited as the main reason. The city’s industry needs an estimated $500 million in the short term to recapitalise, according to economic analysts.
According to the latest council minutes, the acting town clerk Sikhangezile Zhou reported that the Ministry of Macro Economic Planning and Investment Promotion was coordinating an Investment Promotion trip to Qingdao, China early this month to scout for investment and Bulawayo officials were invited to attend.
“Delegates coordinated by the office of the Honourable Minister of State for Bulawayo Metropolitan Province are invited to take part in this trip to promote investment for Bulawayo. The revival of Bulawayo requires a joint effort that will guarantee the turnaround of industry in the City,” reads part of the minutes.
According to the minutes, the visit would be a follow up on the meeting held by Moyo and Bulawayo provincial affairs minister Eunice Sandi Moyo with the Chinese delegation in Harare on the 6th of January 2016.
“This visit in May 2016 is a culmination of the talks done earlier this year,” council said.
BCC was therefore requested to come up with a delegation of at least five people which may include the mayor and four other technocrats that would accompany Sandi-Moyo to Qingdao, China.
The city may also benefit from training programmes coordinated by the twinning city, consulting organisations and academia in the areas including city treasury/fund management, operations management especially linking of different city departments, project management principles, implementation standards and rules of best practice in modern city management and administration.
The city may also benefit from water reticulation, waste management and disposal as well as business opportunities in this sector of city operations, housing, community and social services departmental opportunities, identifying investment opportunities and bringing through investors as well as implementing projects and programmes that are of economic benefit to both Councils.
As part of the council efforts to lure investors into the city, Bulawayo has opened up vast swathes of vacant land in various suburbs for development and investment.