VICE-PRESIDENT Joice Mujuru became the second high-ranking official to skip the ongoing Zimbabwe International Trade Fair (ZITF) after pulling out of the international business conference she had been billed to officially open yesterday.
Mujuru’s unexplained absence comes a few days after Congo Brazzaville President Denis Sassou Nguesso who had been earmarked to officially open the 55th edition of the country’s premier trade exhibition, withdrew last week.
President Robert Mugabe’s office said Nguesso would be engaged in talks to bring peace to the war-ravaged Central African Republic. Mugabe is now expected to officially open the show tomorrow.
Mujuru was replaced by Senior Minister Simon Khaya Moyo who told guests that “due to circumstances beyond her control, she is not able to be with us but she is here in spirit”.
The conference drew captains of industry, government officials and foreign exhibitors, and was held under the theme “Technology and Innovation: A key pillar for ZimAsset’s successful implementation”.
Meanwhile, Industry and Commerce minister Mike Bimha urged industry to move away from the “price wars” syndrome and adopt innovative strategies as a way of sustaining competition.
Bimha said revision of business models towards competitive production of higher quality value added goods was key to sustainable economic growth.
“Companies need to invest in relevant technologies to improve on productivity and quality of goods and services in order to take advantage of export opportunities in the region and beyond,” he said.
“Industry needs to adopt and adapt to cutting edge innovative solutions to meet the demands of the ever-changing consumer needs and wants.”
Bimha said firms also needed to invest in relevant technologies to improve on productivity and quality of goods in order to take advantage of export opportunities in the region.