Trade volumes between Harare and Dubai rose to US$2,3 billion in 2021, from US$1,5 billion in 2020 as the “Zimbabwe is open for business” policy continues to pay off.
The recently launched business council also aims to promote Zimbabwean-owned companies registered in the United Arab Emirates as well as their goods and services in the Middle East.
President Mnangagwa was in the UAE in March last year for the Zimbabwe National Day at Expo 2020 Dubai, and had successful engagements with Zimbabweans based in the UAE and other parts of the world on the sidelines of the event.
During his visit, which had a packed schedule, President Mnangagwa met UAE Vice President and Prime Minister Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid al Maktoum, who is also the ruler of Dubai.
The two exchanged notes on co-operation in the areas of mining and agriculture. Bilateral trade between the UAE and Zimbabwe witnessed strong growth between 2019 and 2021.
UAE imports from Zimbabwe reached US$2,3 billion in 2021 compared to US$1,5 billion in 2020 and US$904 million in 2019 while UAE exports to Zimbabwe accounted for US$209 million in 2021.
Main Zimbabwean exports are precious stones and metals.
Buoyed by the strong bilateral relations which have seen a surge in trade volumes, the Dubai Chamber of Commerce has announced the establishment of the Zimbabwean Business Council, with the main objective of promoting commercial interests of Zimbabwe and Zimbabwean businesses in Dubai.
The launch of the Zimbabwean Business Council is in line with the chamber’s plans to establish new country-specific business councils and expand their roles to boost Dubai’s foreign trade and promote cross-border business opportunities for member companies.
“We aim to create new channels of economic co-operation between business communities in the Emirate and promising markets around the world. Covering markets of strategic importance to Dubai, business councils provide the right platforms for businesses in the UAE and abroad to connect, collaborate and build mutually beneficial partnerships.
“These councils will support us as we further expand our presence across Africa, Latin America and the Middle East and attract more companies and investment from these regions,” said Maha al Gargawi, executive director of Business Advocacy at Dubai Chambers. Commenting on the establishment of the new business council, Mr Rungano Innocent Nyaude, one of the founding members of the council, said the council will go a long way in bringing together businesses operating in the UAE and make co-ordination easy.
“The Zimbabwean Business Council in the UAE looks to play a pivotal role in growing the Dubai-Zimbabwe business relations by bringing together Zimbabwean businesses operating in Dubai, building an ecosystem of co-ordination and networking which will, in turn, build further trade corridors between the UAE and Zimbabwe.
“The UAE is Zimbabwe’s second-largest export destination market and through co-ordination with stakeholders, it is our mission to play a part in strengthening the trade relations between the two countries and grow the business footprint of Zimbabweans in the UAE,” he said.
The new business council will further strengthen burgeoning trade relations between Zimbabwean companies and the business community with other companies in the UAE, contributing to an increase in trade volumes between the two countries.
Establishment of the Zimbabwean Business Council is a collaborative effort in improving the ease of doing business in Dubai, in addition to creating a supportive, enabling and world-class business environment in the Emirate.
The Second Republic led by President Mnangagwa has embarked on an engagement and re-engagement drive as it seeks to be a friend to all and an enemy to none, so as to boost the economy and improve living standards in line with Vision 2030 of an upper middle-income society.