Busi­ness com­mu­nity seeks to ex­pand Mutare Dry Port

The Manica Post - - Business News - Rumbidzayi Zinyuke Se­nior Busi­ness Re­porter

ZIMBABWE and Mozambique have joined forces to ex­pand the Dry Port in Mutare to fa­cil­i­tate ef­fi­cient trade be­tween the two South­ern African coun­tries through the port of Beira.

This is part of projects pro­posed un­der the Joint Eco­nomic De­vel­op­ment fo­rum es­tab­lished by the prov­inces of Man­i­ca­land and Man­ica.

In an in­ter­view, the chair­man of the avi­a­tion, trans­port and in­fra­struc­ture clus­ter Mr Joseph San­hanga said the two prov­inces had iden­ti­fied projects that could be car­ried out to un­lock eco­nomic de­vel­op­ment.

“The com­mit­tee is guided by the be­lief that the pri­vate sec­tor leads de­vel­op­ment projects guided by Gov­ern­ment. Gov­ern­ment is good at ad­min­is­tra­tion so when there is po­lit­i­cal will on its part to de­velop the coun­tries through Pub­lic Pri­vate Part­ner­ships (PPP), we come in with the ex­per­tise to make the projects work,” he said.

He said the Min­is­ter of State for Pro­vin­cial Af­fairs Mrs Mon­ica Mutsvangwa and her coun­ter­part the Gov­er­nor of Man­ica Prov­ince Mr Al­berto Ri­cardo Mond­lane had met on two oc­ca­sions in the past six months to fa­cil­i­tate the cre­ation of the com­mit­tee as well as the modal­i­ties on how the com­mit­tee would work to­gether on projects.

“For the dry port, Mozambique had plans to es­tab­lish a dry port in Van­duzi district, but the area is less close to Beira than Mutare so once we had agreed on the fo­rum, we de­cided to ex­pand the Mutare Dry Port which is about 250km from the sea,” he said.

Mr San­hanga said the com­mit­tee had iden­ti­fied land near Feruka for the Dry Port and had al­ready en­gaged Gov­ern­ment on the way for­ward.

He said other projects that are in his clus­ter in­clude the Mutare Air­port project, the re­vival of the hor­ti­cul­ture farm­ing and ben­e­fi­ci­a­tion, the Beira Cor­ri­dor as well as the cre­ation of an Ex­port Pro­cess­ing Zone.

“If we do these projects in­dus­tri­ously, in the next five to 20 years, Man­i­ca­land will be the big­gest in­vest­ment des­ti­na­tion in the coun­try tak­ing ad­van­tage of how we are strate­gi­cally po­si­tioned near the port of Beira (about 250km) not leav­ing out our vast nat­u­ral re­sources wealth and agri­cul­tural po­ten­tial through­out the prov­ince. We want fu­tur­is­tic, modern in­fra­struc­ture like flats and sky­scrapers to ac­com­mo­date the grow­ing pop­u­la­tion in the wake of lim­ited land for hous­ing for all,” said Mr San­hanga.

He said the re­vival of the Beira Cor­ri­dor was also a key as­pect in un­lock­ing value in the two coun­tries as it was the fastest and cheap­est gate­way to the sea for re­gional land­locked coun­tries.

The aim of the Beira Cor­ri­dor project, which has been in limbo for years, is the re­ha­bil­i­ta­tion of the trans­port in­fra­struc­ture of the Beira cor­ri­dor in Mozambique, in­clud­ing the re­ha­bil­i­ta­tion of the Sena rail­way line and the restora­tion of the Beira port ac­cess chan­nel to its orig­i­nal spec­i­fi­ca­tion.

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