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Biti Urges Govt to Boost Capacity of Distressed Companies Fund

Most companies have shut down in cities like Bulawayo, leaving hundreds of workers jobsless. (File Photo)

Former Finance Minister Tendai Biti has urged the government to capacitate the Distressed and Marginalized Areas Fund (DEMAF) to the tune of $5 billion to try and revive ailing industries.

This comes as Industry Minister Mike Bimha told captains of industry that President Robert Mugabe is planning to meet them to find ways to address the deepening crisis in the manufacturing sector.

The Confederation of Zimbabwe Industries in its latest survey said capacity utilization took a 3,3 percentage dip to 36,3 percent in 2014 from the previous year.

Capacity utilisation is the percentage of the firm’s total possible production capacity that is actually being used.

Prolonged power cuts, liquidity challenges and low domestic demand are blamed for the drop.

Biti said industries need capital injection or more will close shop.