ZimTrade, the country’s trade development and promotion body, has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Senior Experten Service (SES), which is Germany’s volunteer organisation for retired experts and executives. SES provides technical assistance to Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (SMEs) by sending experts to assist in improving productivity, quality and ultimately impact economic performance.
This MoU will pave the way for these experts to assist Zimbabwean companies, especially SMEs, who require technical assistance in the manufacturing sector. The initiative is aimed at enhancing productivity and export competitiveness through factory floor interventions.
SES has implemented various successful projects throughout the continent, in countries such as South Africa, Botswana, Mozambique, Zambia, among others. Through this partnership, SES experts will provide assistance to the manufacturing value chain, which include processes design, factory floor layout, production technologies, material-handling and product design, amongst others.
According to the recently published Confederation of Zimbabwe Industries’ Manufacturing Survey, the current manufacturing capacity utilisation is at 45.1%. Through this MoU and the initiatives that follow, Zimbabwean manufacturing companies are set to increase manufacturing capacity utilisation.
ZimTrade also signed a similar MoU in April 2016 with PUM, a Netherlands based organisation of Senior Experts. The PUM programme has yielded positive results for various companies with the majority testifying of improved efficiencies, cost reduction and new product development.