Turk­ish Ex­port Week: Lessons for Zim in­dus­tries

Chronicle (Zimbabwe) - - Worldwide - Joseph Gunda

THE Zim­bab­wean busi­ness del­e­ga­tion led by my­self un­der the Con­fed­er­a­tion of Zim­babwe In­dus­tries (CZI) ban­ner and Hon­ourable Keith Guzah from Gov­ern­ment, trav­elled to Tur­key at the in­vi­ta­tion of the Turk­ish Na­tional Assem­bly to at­tend the widely ac­claimed Turk­ish ex­port week, which took place be­tween 1-3 Novem­ber 2017 at the Is­tan­bul Con­gress Cen­tre.

The in­vite fol­lowed the sign­ing of an MoU be­tween CZI and their Turk­ish coun­ter­parts, DEIK at Vic­to­ria Falls dur­ing the re­cent CZI an­nual con­gress. The event was graced by the coun­try’s Prime Min­is­ter — Mr Binali Yildirim and min­is­ters of re­lated in­dus­tries such as cus­toms and trade, fi­nance, labour, so­cial se­cu­rity, food, agri­cul­ture and live­stock, sci­ence, in­dus­try and tech­nol­ogy. Some were drawn from cul­ture and tourism. These led trade — re­lated panel dis­cus­sions on ex­port fi­nanc­ing, lo­gis­tics and cus­toms pro­ce­dures, ser­vices ex­ports and fail­ure ex­pe­ri­ences.

One of the key panel dis­cus­sions in­volved lead­ing world con­glom­er­ates such as Toy­ota and Unilever, whom Tur­key en­gages di­rectly at the high­est level to court them for in­vest­ment in their coun­try. Tur­key be­lieves such di­rect en­gage­ments with the world’s pop­u­lar brands will help bol­ster their ex­port ini­tia­tives.

Con­cur­rent to the sem­i­nars, a buy­ers’ mis­sion pro­gramme com­pris­ing 660 from 64 coun­tries rep­re­sent­ing all con­ti­nents, took place. Tur­key is the com­mer­cial gate way to both Asia and Europe and is aim­ing to make con­tin­ued sig­nif­i­cant strides in fa­cil­i­tat­ing in­ter­na­tional trade be­cause of its strate­gic ge­o­graph­i­cal lo­ca­tion. Aligned to its global trade growth vi­sion, cur­rently es­ti­mated at 3.6 per­cent by the IMF’s World Eco­nomic Out­look. Tur­key is look­ing at in­creased co­op­er­a­tion with African coun­tries un­der the theme “Let Tur­key win, Let Africa win; Let Africa grow, let Tur­key get its share”.

The Zim­bab­wean 16-mem­ber busi­ness del­e­ga­tion com­prised of Hon­ourable Guzah (founder — Na­tional Busi­ness Coun­cil of Zim­babwe), my­self Joseph Gunda (gen­eral man­ager — Gen­eral Belt­ings and rep­re­sen­ta­tive of the CZI), Ms Ivy Mu­sora (Busi­ness Op­ti­mi­sa­tion — Mediter­ranean Ship­ping Com­pany), Mr Em­manuel Chimedza (di­rec­tor — Es­sar Tubes and Tow­ers and rep­re­sen­ta­tive of the Con­struc­tion In­dus­try Fed­er­a­tion of Zim­babwe and mem­ber of CZI), Mr Sim­p­li­cio Shamba (pres­i­dent — Mo­tor In­dus­try As­so­ci­a­tion of Zim­babwe and CZI mem­ber), Mr Charles Tso­rayi (CEO — Sea­sonal Footwear (Pvt) Ltd) and rep­re­sen­ta­tive of the Zim­babwe Leather Coun­cil and CZI mem­ber).

Oth­ers were Mr Is­rael Muchuchu (head of hu­man cap­i­tal and special projects at Col­com Hold­ings Lim­ited and rep­re­sen­ta­tive of the Stock-feed Man­u­fac­tur­ers’ As­so­ci­a­tion), Mr Charles Chirikure (di­rec­tor — Konak En­ter­prises), Mr Kelvin Motsi (di­rec­tor — MC Freight So­lu­tions), Mr Luck­son Gwara (di­rec­tor — Su­per­lux Au­to­mo­tive), Mrs Nancy Murove (ex­ec­u­tive Whole­sale, Cor­po­rates & SMEs – NetOne Cel­lu­lar and CZI Mem­ber), Ms El­iz­a­beth Bore (man­u­fac­tur­ing ex­ec­u­tive — ZFC Lim­ited and CZI mem­ber); Mr Pa­tel (di­rec­tor — Shriji Lug­gage Ware (Pvt) Ltd); Mr Clive Ox­den — Wil­lows (man­ag­ing di­rec­tor – Re­frig­er­a­tion and Air Con­di­tion­ing Ser­vices and CZI mem­ber) and Mr Henry Ne­maire (di­rec­tor —Tan­ganda Tea Com­pany and CZI mem­ber).

The main ob­jec­tive of Zim­babwe’s par­tic­i­pa­tion was twofold: To es­tab­lish in­vest­ment link­ages with Turk­ish com­pa­nies sub­se­quent to the MoU as well as we seek new ex­port mar­kets in Tur­key and from par­tic­i­pants from other coun­tries rep­re­sented.

Ex­plor­ing al­ter­na­tive cheap sources of raw ma­te­ri­als and other com­modi­ties for Zim­babwe’s man­u­fac­tur­ing sec­tor from Tur­key. For ex­am­ple, agro­chem­i­cals, rub­ber chem­i­cals and fab­rics, food chem­i­cals, tech­nol­ogy up­grades in telecom­mu­ni­ca­tions (for TelOne), al­ter­na­tive mo­tor ve­hi­cle brands ap­peal­ing to the Zim­bab­wean mar­ket (for Toy­ota) and so on. All Zim­bab­wean com­pa­nies and their rep­re­sen­ta­tives were al­lo­cated ta­bles amongst so many African coun­tries for B2B meet­ings to show­case their prod­ucts/ser­vices and in­ter­act with the Turk­ish busi­ness com­mu­nity di­rectly on ar­eas of mu­tual in­ter­est. The in­ter­ac­tions were highly in­ten­sive and clearly demon­strated how Tur­key is se­ri­ous about in­vest­ment in Zim­babwe.

Fur­ther to this, I ar­ranged two very con­struc­tive meet­ings with the Pres­i­dent of DEIK for Zim­bab­wean Busi­ness Coun­cil. He shared with us the Turk­ish Gov­ern­ment vi­sion for the in­dus­tri­alised City of Konya, which they in­tend to turn into an agri­cul­tural Special Eco­nomic Zone (SEZ). There are a lot of prospects for busi­ness link­ages in this area and Zim­babwe has a chance to get a few lessons par­tic­u­larly on agro in­dus­tries.

The trip was an eye opener par­tic­u­larly on how a sin­cere busi­ness to gov­ern­ment en­gage­ment can in­flu­ence and drive eco­nomic growth. With a GDP of US$857.7bil­lion as of 2016,Tur­key does not have nat­u­ral re­sources as does Zim­babwe but has recorded bud­get sur­plus of US$1.64 bil­lion as of Au­gust 2017.

A Turk­ish ex­port in­creased by 8.7 per­cent from pre­vi­ous year 2016 to US$11.8 bil­lion as of Septem­ber 2017 and this is driven by man­u­fac­tur­ing (93.3 per­cent), agri­cul­ture and hunt­ing (3.6 per­cent, min­ing and quar­ry­ing (2.4 per­cent) and tourism. Tak­ing ad­van­tage of their ge­o­graph­i­cal lo­ca­tion, they have recorded 25.3bil­lion tourist ar­rivals in 2016 through their ports gen­er­at­ing US$22.1bil­lion in rev­enue for the coun­try all this through ro­bust poli­cies.

Our team is busy con­sol­i­dat­ing and sum­maris­ing all the in­ter­ac­tions with a view to present and share this ex­pe­ri­ence with other busi­ness mem­bers and the rel­e­vant min­istry on the prospects of strate­gic part­ner­ships and busi­ness link­ages with Tur­key. Only then can we be able to es­tab­lish if we have part­ner­ships es­tab­lished.

Mr Joseph Gunda is the pres­i­dent of CZI Mata­bele­land Chap­ter. He led the Zim­bab­wean del­e­ga­tion to Tur­key.

Part of the Zim­bab­wean busi­ness del­e­ga­tion un­der the Con­fed­er­a­tion of Zim­babwe In­dus­tries ban­ner who at­tended the Turk­ish ex­port week, in Tur­key

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