Mutoko gets SEZ boost

03 Mar, 2019 - 00:03 0 Views
Mutoko gets SEZ boost

The Sunday Mail

Business Reporter

Surewin Special Economic Zone (SEZ) will drive economic and industrial activity in the Mutoko community after it commenced operations this year.

The SEZ, which capitalises on the area’s key resource of granite, was brought into effect on February 1, 2018 through the promulgation of General Notice 104 of 2019.

Surewin has indicated that it plans to introduce new technologies in granite mining, as well as the setting up of a manufacturing plant for granite cutting and polishing, including production of tiles and related products.

According to one of the directors of Surewin Investment (Pvt) Ltd Mr Yao, the project will attract foreign direct investment (FDI) to the tune of US$20 million with an estimated revenue of US$5 million per annum through both local and export sales of value-added granite rock products.

“The project will see thousands of direct and indirect jobs created and a huge number of the jobs will be for the locals. About 20 locals are expected to be trained on mine construction projects during the first year of implementation,” said Mr Yao.

“The project will contribute greatly towards introducing new technologies and skill, value addition, import substitution and creation of thousands of direct and indirect jobs in the main projects and downstream.”

SEZs are areas in which business and trade laws are different from the rest of the country and are aimed at increasing trade, higher investment, job creation and effective administration.

The Government is confident that the special economic zone model is a vital cog in attaining an upper-middle class economy as it seeks to propel economic activity in the country anchored mostly on resource beneficiation.

Last year, nine companies were granted Special Economic Zone status in a development that will expedite Government’s drive to increase foreign direct investment (FDI) inflows.

According to a Government Gazette published last Friday, the nine companies include Surewin Pvt Ltd; Iron Steel Company of Zimbabwe; Afrochine Pvt Ltd, Southpole Consulting Pvt Ltd; Lentsloane Pvt Ltd; Tradekings Zimbabwe Pvt Ltd; Ecosoft Pvt Ltd; Nkonyeni Agriculture Pvt Ltd and Bernard Development Corporation Pvt Ltd.

This was after Government promulgated Statutory Instrument (SI) 154 of 2018 which was gazetted on August 17, 2018 that effectively brought Special Economic Zones (SEZs) into operation.

SI-154 stipulated the fees for every application for a developer, operator or investment, permit or licence.

The Zimbabwe Special Economic Zones Authority (ZimSEZA) has since declared four special economic zones in Mutare, Bulawayo, Beitbridge and Victoria Falls and the implementation plans for the operationalisation of these zones are now at an advanced stage with a concept master-plan having been developed for the Victoria Falls and Beitbridge Special Economic Zones.

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