THE 56th edition of the Zimbabwe International Trade Fair (ZITF) continued on a subdued note on the first public day of the exhibition today.
BY BATANAI MUTASA
This year only two days were reserved for traders and non-traders started touring the stands this morning. Exhibitors and visitors complained that activity failed to meet expectations.
Tianjin Foreign economic and Trade promotion Association representative, Liu Chuxiong, said he was disappointed with the first public day failing to liven up the exhibition.
“Last year when the public was given access most of our companies sold nearly all their stock, but this year the movement is quite limited,” he added.
Chuxiong’s explained that his stand which sold clothing and fabrics, had been popular in previous years.
A visitor, Patience Muungani, said the 2015 edition did not compare to previous ones.
“On the first day there would be chaos on pathways within this exhibition with the crowds. This year, as you can see, there is no such excitement,” she said.
She added that traditional interest points like radio station stands were practically deserted, showing low morale.
“The problem is that this event is not growing and every year people see the same things, so they end up just coming because their kids insist.
“I expect there would be a better turnout on the last day,” she added.
However, a first-time exhibitor – Frivatec lead mechanical engineer – Alfred Mutemi, said he believed the turnout was fair.
“The day is not as busy as expected, but I will give it the benefit of the doubt because it is a Thursday.
“The best way to assess how everything goes is in the long term, so let’s wait and see what happens in the final days,” he added.