Top Zimbabwe’s exporting companies will be honoured on October 29 for their contribution to national exports, during the first ever onsight/online awards ceremony.
The hybrid event will be held in Harare, with proceedings broadcast on online platforms to ensure maximum benefit for all participants and exporting companies from across the country.
Considering the risks posed by coronavirus on physical meetings, the event — which is usually attended by more than 300 people — will only be attended physically by less than 100 people, who will observe social distance along Government’s and World Health Organisation’s guidelines.
Speaking on this year’s event, ZimTrade CEO, Allan Majuru said although the global pandemic has disrupted business activities, it is important that we recognise companies that performed well last year.
“The growing interest to participate in export market by local companies is commendable and we ought to acknowledge their contribution to national exports.
“Although Covid-19 has made it difficult to meet, as ZimTrade we realised the importance of honouring top companies that contributed to the realisation of targets set by the National Export Strategy launched last year by President Mnangagwa”, said Majuru.
Traditionally, the Awards Ceremony has been held back-to-back with the Annual Exporter’s Conference. However, the physical conference was this year suspended, with most of the activities usually done during the event, such as business-to-business linkages taken to online platforms.
During last year’s event which took place in Bulawayo, local exporters had an opportunity to interact with buyers from Botswana, Namibia, and Zambia.
To ensure continued engagement with buyers, regardless of the absence of the conference this year, ZimTrade has so far facilitated virtual meetings with buyers from Botswana and DRC.
During the virtual meetings, local companies met counterparts in regional markets and have since started creating synergies for exporting products and importing raw materials.
About the Exporter of the Year Awards
The ZimTrade 2019 Exporter of the Year Awards are aimed at inculcating an export culture amongst Zimbabwean companies through recognition of those enterprises that have excelled in value-added exports.
The awards are designed to recognise top exporting companies in Zimbabwe, whose contribution goes beyond trade, but are also involved in other activities such as community development. The awards recognise the efforts of enterprises in growing their exports in an environmentally sustainable manner as well as the Corporate Social Responsibility done by companies.
The event generates a lot of interest among exporters as the it gives cognisance to local companies’ efforts to compete on the international market.
Winners — whose adjudication is done by private and public sector representatives with oversight from auditors — will be drawn from 15 sectors, with each sector having a runner-up and winner. The sectors are Building and Construction; Agricultural Implements; Engineering; Textiles; Household and Electrical; Clothing; Furniture; Processed Foods; Floriculture; Pharmaceuticals; Fresh Produce; Packaging; Agricultural Inputs; Leather, Leather Products and Footwear; and Hides and Skins. From the winners of these sectors, the Overall SME Exporter of the Year, and Overall Exporter of the Year will also be announced.