Bulawayo SMEs complex 90 percent complete

October 14, 2021

TENDAI BHEBE    IN BULAWAYO 

 

Works on the refurbishment of the Old Mutual’s OK Mart complex for small and medium enterprises (SMEs) in Bulawayo is 90 percent complete, it has been established.

Initially, the complex, which is expected to accommodate about 60 SMEs, was set to be completed in August. But, there were delays largely due to Covid-19 restrictions.

The Bulawayo Chamber of SMEs coordinator, Nketha  Dlamini,  confirmed the development this week.

“With the assistance of the international labour organization and the chamber micro small medium enterprises in Bulawayo, the complex has been refurbished to about 90% completion as of today (Monday). We expect that when it’s finished we are looking at accommodating about 60 SMEs,” Bulawayo Chamber of SMEs coordinator, Nketha  Dlamini (pictured) told Business Times this week.

The complex is expected to help SMEs to work in better environment.

“Basically, these SMEs are going to have easier access to markets, the conditions are healthier. It also improves the SMEs as far as the market is concerned.Also, the place is secure as far as the security is concerned,” he said.

Most SMEs are not registered, with a recent survey carried out by FinScope Zimbabwe showing that only 15% of them were registered.

Traders in the informal sector have been urged to formalise their operations so that they can access external market benefits.

He said the main goal is to help SMEs get developed in different ways.

“I think basically for the general package so far as the Bulawayo Chamber of micro is concerned, we are offering SMEs assistance in as far business advisory is concerned.

“We also assist them to get operating space. We also assist them in development, supply linkages and professional development, “Dlamini said.

He said  working on decent spaces would also play a big part in enabling SMEs to formalise their operations.

It is understood that close to just a 100 SMEs have registered with the ministry.

Government is also looking at establishing SMEs incubation centres throughout the country to accelerate development of start-ups and fledgling entrepreneurs to effectively impact the growth of the economy.

 

 

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