GOVERNMENT will introduce more policy measures to buttress Statutory Instrument (SI) 64 of 2016 to help local producers build up on exports, Industry and Commerce minister Mike Bimha said yesterday.
Source: Govt moots more statutory instruments to support SI64 – NewsDay Zimbabwe February 9, 2017
BY TATIRA ZWINOIRA
SI64 restricts the importation of 43 products that have local equivalents in a bid to protect the floundering local industry.
Bimha told NewsDay yesterday on the sidelines of the official opening of Lesaffre Zimbabwe’s new baking centre that they wanted to do more in order for producers to be more sufficient, with lower production costs.
“We are going to do more than SI64 and find ways of reinforcing that, while also coming with other policy measures to continue to give support to our local producers, but at the same time encouraging them to be sufficient low cost producers and look for opportunities for exports,” he said.
“Of course, we cannot do everything in a day, but we are, first off, going to look at those companies that we supported through SI64 of 2016 to find out how we could assist them to retool and re-equip.
“As I said last year, with a policy like that (SI64 of 2016), you do not see the fruits of it in one year. It takes time. I have got a lot of invitations to come and visit factories to showcase what they are doing, for them to acknowledge the assistance government has given them. So we are going to see more than this (more manufacturers’ having higher capacities).”
The call for more restrictions comes as Lesaffre Zimbabwe opened a new baking centre, after government put a restriction on yeast imports.
To support this centre, Lesaffre Zimbabwe’s holding company, Lesaffre, put a capital injection of $3 million into the local unit.
According to Lesaffre Zimbabwe, SI126 of 2014 helped them to be in a position to invest in the new baking centre with state-of-the-art machinery. The centre will be dedicated to training, technical support, product and process development and commercial presentation of the products.
Lesaffre Zimbabwe is working on plans to modernise and extend their Gweru plant.
The baking centre, which is Lesaffre’s first in Southern Africa, will service the region.
“The customers will decide how much we sell and it is the quality of our products and services, which will make them choose us in ordering the quantities. We are not disclosing so many numbers because our competitors will be so happy to know what we will be doing. We want to establish ourselves everywhere we can we have a big network of plants in the world,” Lesaffre chief executive office, Antoine Baule said.
Lesaffre is an international yeast and fermentation company.