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US Business Delegation Scouting Investment Opportunities in Zimbabwe

  • Gibbs Dube

Following a decline in bilateral trade in 2010, Zimbabwe and the United Zimbabwe and the United States traded goods worth US$94 million in the first nine months of this year, a 46 percent rise over the 2010 period

An eight-person American business delegation from Chicago is currently in Zimbabwe scouting for opportunities in various sectors.

US Embassy Political and Economic Affairs Counselor Michael Gonzales said the delegation, led by Elzie Higginbottom, chairman and CEO of East Lake Management and Development Corp., has met with top business people and politicians.

"This is a good indicator of the future of U.S.-Zimbabwe economic relations as it is the first major U.S. business delegation to visit the country in several years," he said.

He said the delegation understands Zimbabwe has political and economic challenges but wants to identify investments in the country to create jobs in both nations.

Zimbabwe and the United States traded goods worth US$94 million in the first nine months of this year, a 46 percent rise over the same period in 2010.

US Ambassador to Zimbabwe Charles Ray said the country has the fastest-growing economy in Southern Africa and among the three fastest growing in all Africa.

there are plenty of areas ripe for collaboration, "but of course there are also big risks to manage and potholes to dodge," Ray said. “We know that political uncertainty is the main reason financing for business in Zimbabwe is scarce."

Mr. Ray recently attended this year's US-Africa Business Summit in Washington with 17 Zimbabwean executives who urged Americans to consider investing in Zimbabwe.

The visit is being facilitated by the American Business Association of Zimbabwe.

Other members of the Chicago delegation include John Girzadas, Hugh Williams, Don Zimelis, Munir Muhammad, Mandene Muhammad, David Rosen, Maze Jackson and former US Congressman Mel Reynolds.

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