Bulawayo SMEs centre launched

Close to 60 informal traders in Bulawayo have been formalised in Bulawayo

The government in partnership with the International Labour Organisation (ILO) and other partners on 13 December 2021 launched the Bulawayo Metro Mini-factories which houses close to 60 informal businesses that have since been formalised.

Where is the Bulawayo Metro Mini-factories centre located?

·         Situated at the OK Mart Complex the Metro Mini-Factories Centre accommodates close to 60 formalised small-scale manufacturing and service units, which have been provided with standard compartment working spaces with adequate lighting, power supply, ablution facilities, security and digital equipment like computers.

·         The facility was secured from Old Mutual on a rental basis and had to be completely refurbished at a cost of US$165 000, involving different key players to ensure its condition suits modern industry specifications.

Stakeholders involved in the formalisation project

·         Government of Zimbabwe

·         International Labour organisation (ILO)

·         Old Mutual

·         Chamber of SMEs

·         Bulawayo City Council

·         National University of Science and Technology,

·         National Social Security Authority (NSSA)

·         Bulawayo SMEs Trust

·         Junior Achievers Zimbabwe

Informal sector contribution to the economy

·         The informal sector is employing about 76 percent of the country’s active population, according to the 2019 Labour Force Survey

More about the formalisation project

·         This is the first pilot model in the country whose successful implementation should inspire replication of the same in other parts of the country.

·         The intervention is set to go a long way in enhancing the contribution of young businesses in the city towards promotion, preservation and sustainability of the economy, which will create more decent jobs.

·         In line with the National Development Strategy (NDS1:2021-2022), the mini-factory model is also expected to largely facilitate the transitioning of the largest base of the city’s entrepreneurs operating informally to formality.

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