WASHINGTON DC —
This year’s edition of the annual Zimbabwe International Trade Fair (ZITF) opened in Bulawayo with an official of the trade fair company expressing confidence of a bigger exhibition than last year.
According to the fair organizers, China is the largest exhibitor, occupying 1,061 square metres of space, up from last year’s 600 square metres followed by South Africa with 800 square metres.
Despite the waning economic fortunes that Zimbabwe is facing, ZITF general manager Nomathemba Ndlovu, said the country’s premier exhibition has been growing over the last couple of years.
Other countries exhibiting include Brazil, Congo Brazzavile, Egypt, Indonesia, Iran, Kenya, Malawi, Mozambique, Poland, USA, Bangladesh, India and Nigeria.
From Tuesday to Friday only business people are allowed at the fair and it will open to members of the public on Friday when President Robert Mugabe is expected to officially open the exhibition.
Congo-Brazzaville president Denis Sassou Nguesso was expected to open the event but failed to travel to Zimbabwe due to what the government said were unforeseen circumstances.
Industry and Commerce Minister, Joey Bima, said the government received reports that President Nguesso could not travel to Zimbabwe due to some illness in the family.
Bima further told VOA Studio 7 the government is happy with this year’s trade fair because it is bigger than last year.
But Bulawayo Progressive Residents’ Association spokesman, Roderick Fayayo said there are no indications that the fair will be better than last year.