HARARE – Zimbabwe and India have extended the Indo-Zimbabwe Project aimed at supporting the development of the small-to-medium enterprises (SMEs) sector in Zimbabwe.
The Indo-Zimbabwe project was established in 2006 following the partnership between the Government of Zimbabwe and Indian under the G-15.
HMT international is the Indian Project implementing Agency and it successfully completed the initial project in February 2014.
Under the project, 16 centres, including the Indo-Zimbabwe Technology Centre at Harare Institute of Technology and India Technology centre at Bulawayo Polytechnic as well as 14 common facility centres in all the 10 provinces of Zimbabwe were established.
Following the latest signing of an MOU between the Government of Zimbabwe and India on June 9, 2018, the new project is going to result in the repair of existing machinery and supply of new machinery being undertaken at 11 centres.
Speaking at a meeting last week with HMT international chairman for the extension project and Indian ambassador R Masakui, Industry, Commerce and Enterprise Development Minister Dr Mike Bimha said the project is meant to promote access to technology by MSMEs in fields of Computer Numerical Control (CNC) and Computer Aided Manufacturing (CAM), plastic products manufacturing as well as carpentry and metal fabrication.
In August 2016, the Ministry took the correct Ambassador of India in Zimbabwe on tour of the Indo-Zimbabwe Technology Centre in Harare and it was observed that there is need to upgrade the technology and to provide new machinery for the project. It was then agreed that the t Ministry for submits a proposal for this purpose for consideration by the Indian Government,” he said.
“The Ministry submitted a proposal to the tune of $2, 97 million in the form of a grant to cover supply of additional machinery and equipment, training of Zimbabwean personnel and repair and maintenance of the old and new machinery for a period of the three years.”
Dr Bimha also highlighted major achievements of the Indo-Zimbabwe since inception.
“Major achievements to date improved quality of products-on average the centres are benefiting 1500 MSMEs annually who are the various centres located around the country to manufacture their own products.
“The centres have allowed the country to manufacture moulds, machines parts, tools and components which were being imported from as far as China and South Africa thereby saving the country foreign currency.
“The centres have assisted to enhance skills levels in Zimbabwe by offering training to an average of 1000 students annually. Students have been drawn from industry, universities, technical colleges and vocational training centres.
“The centres are offering service to industry on chargeable basis and the income so generated is being used to meet the operational cost of the centres thereby lessening the burden on state funds.”