Zimbabwean companies look west for equipment

via Local companies look west for equipment | The Zimbabwean. 09 June 2014

The much-hyped government Look East policy has failed to bring desirable results – as evidenced by companies and local authorities who are shopping for equipment in the west.

Government adopted the Look East policy more than a decade ago after a fall out with western countries over the abuse of human rights, election rigging and a chaotic land reform which saw the economy nose-diving.

But local companies are complaining that Chinese products were not durable and say they have lost of badly as a result. Some have heaps of scraps of Chinese machinery in their mechanical workshops, which has either broken down and they failed to get back up spares or has failed to perform properly.

So they are now looking west. Recently, one the largest timber producers, Allied Timbers, procured a state of the art timber processing machine worth $1 million from a Germany company. The new sawmill, according to CEO Joseph Kanyekanye, has the capacity to produce timber worth $1 million every month for export and local consumption.

He said the machinery was durable and could perform better. “The Germans came here and assembled it for us and trained local technicians,” he said while touring the plant recently.

In another classic case of defying the Look East policy, a leading tea producer has acquired a blending and packaging plant worth $2,5 million from western countries. The financial director of Tanganda, Henry Nemaire, said the world class machinery was being shipped from Italy and Germany and would commissioned this month.

Speaking at a recent Confederation of Zimbabwe Industries (CZI) stakeholders meeting, Nemaire said it was high time the country considered turning west.

Recently, Rusape Town Council acquired a Bell Backhole Loader to the tune of $84,000. Bell is a British company. “We opted for Bell product because of its durability. We procured it through their dealers in South Africa. Our service delivery is expected to improve significantly and we have a warrant and service back up,” said Rusape Town Secretary, Joshua Maligwa.

Mutare Bottling recently commissioned a New Returnable Glass Bottling Line $17 million plant supplied by an Italian company, Sidel SpA. It has the capacity to produce 1,250 cases per hour of 300 ml and 1 litre bottles.



  • comment-avatar
    The Mind Boggles 8 years ago

    Surprise surprise

  • comment-avatar
    Petal 8 years ago


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    kutongwa nonjazi 8 years ago

    Only wise CEO and business persons will make such wise decisions. Ku China hakuna chinhu

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    Funganayi Mutamiri (UK) 8 years ago

    I said it before in one of the forums that when it come to Technology the west is miles ahead, If you are looking at Durability,Versatility,Efficiency,Safety,Ease of usage,Increase in production, less downtime then look west, a great after service etc these guys have a reputation to protect.

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      Funganayi Mutamiri what you say is true. There are many products made in china by UK companies based there. All good products. They just dump their rubbish goods in Africa. Lenova pc,s HP pc.s all marked made in China. Good products. All the junk dumped in Africa.

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    Roving Ambassador 8 years ago

    I have been to Vietnam and South Korea, you would struggle to find any Chinese products. Vietnam and Indonesia are motorcycle countries, you won’t find any Chinese cycles.
    If you have enough time these guys can tell the history of 1000 years of Chinese occupation.
    Nowadays the Chinese are smarter, they will just grab whatever they can and run off.
    ZANU sellouts.

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    Godfrey C 8 years ago

    What about the sanctions????

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      JUKWA aripi? So Its back to the pale devils. I have a colleague who bought a Chinese car called a GONOW; drove it to Zim from Gaborone and haina kudzoka. Yakafira kumusha kwake kuChiweshe. Nhanhasi iriko; yakapakwa pasi pemumhango and he cannot get it fixed

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    Mlimo 8 years ago

    Are there any companies left to look west?

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    Don Cox 8 years ago

    Those companies should have kept their new machinery secret. Some politician will be wanting to grab it.