“We have so far registered 745 commercial and industrial exhibitors compared to last year’s 750 over the same period of time,” said Heather Madombwe, ZAS spokesperson in an interview.
“In the livestock and agric-produce sectors we have so far recorded 295 and 360 exhibitors while in home-industries where we target the less privileged members of society we have 300 entries,” she added.
Madombwe said though booking of stands starts as early as February most exhibitors were opting for the last minute rash.
“Though it is cheaper and convenient to book early most exhibitors were registering late. Booking rates increase as Show days come closer.
“February rates for a stand would be $15 per square-meter meaning a three-by-three meter stand would cost $180 including VAT, ZTA levy and municipal rates for the nine days during show,” she said.
Madombwe said ZAS was offering cheapest rests compared to other national exhibitions.
“In March the rates increase to $18 per square-meter, April $21, May $25 and August $40 per square-meter respectively,” said Madombwe.
Main entrance to ZAS along Samora Machel Main entrance to ZAS along Samora Machel
One local exhibitor, Yusuf Kamwendo of Kadoma told The Zimbabwean that souring rates to book a stand have made it difficult for him to secure a stand in this year’s Harare Agricultural.
“It’s unfortunate that I won’t be participating in this year’s Harare Show as it is now costing over $300 to book a stand for the whole nine days,” said Kamwendo.
Kamwendo participated in the just ended Chinhoyi Agricultural Show in his province Mashonaland West which ran from 15-18 August 2013.
“In Chinhoyi it cost$50 for the four day exhibition and it was unfortunate that it fell during the mid-month when most people had no monies to buy our products. I am into selling toys and other fun materials,” he said.
“Earlier this month I also took part in the Gweru Agricultural Show in Midlands where it was costing $80 for a four-day exhibition,” he added.
Madombwe said the main aim of Harare Agricultural Show was to accommodate exhibitors from all walks of life in Harare in particular and Zimbabwe at large and also engage foreign companies based locally.
“This year we seven foreign exhibitors companies who would be show-casing in this year’s edition while the Italian Embassy has mobilised eight Italian companies for participate.
“Other regional and international countries that would participate include Democratic Republic of Congo, Zambia, South Africa and Israel,” she said.