Confederation of Zimbabwe Industries (CZI) has commended the resilience displayed by industrialists as they navigated through the adversaries presented by the year 2020.
The world was hit with the novel pandemic COVID-19, which presented multiple shocks to world economies including Zimbabwe which experienced a decrease in demand, and disruptions to the supply of input, raw material, and merchandise for resale.
In an interview with Business Mail, CZI president Henry Ruzvidzo said the first quarter imparted industrialists with challenges such as lockdown disruptions and power cuts. In the first quarter, most industries faced foreign currency shortages, high inflation, water supply problems, and constrained demand for some product lines.
“COVID-19 presented challenges for some industries and opportunities for others, travel restrictions and supply chain disruptions especially from Europe and the USA impacted negatively on some businesses,” Ruzvidzo said.
As a measure to curb the spread of COVID-19, the government imposed a nationwide lockdown in March however the economy slowly opened up in September when lockdown measures were relaxed.
Ruzvidzo also said: “Government interventions to open up the economy and stabilise the macro environment from mid-year helped to reduce the negative impact of COVID-19.”
“The foreign currency auction and money supply tightening coupled with re-introduction of multi-currency trading have seen a period of sustained stability which is helping to rebuild confidence,” Ruzvidzo added.
However, he said that the cost-push from trading in a strong currency can affect competitiveness if it goes on for a long period without making currency reform a priority.
He also commented on the provincial data gross domestic product which showed evident inequalities in the distribution of the country’s wealth.
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