PRESIDENT Mnangagwa is in Namibia on a three-day state visit, which coincides with the signing of seven bilateral agreements between Harare and Windhoek.
The President was welcomed at Hosea Kutako International Airport by Namibia’s Deputy Prime Minister Netumbo Nandi-Ndaitwah.
He was later welcomed at the State Guest House by his Namibian counterpart, President Hage Geingob.
President Mnangagwa’s visit to Windhoek is preceded by the hosting of the 9th session of the Zimbabwe-Namibia Joint Permanent Commission on Cooperation (JPCC) during which the deals were thrashed out.
Presidents Mnangagwa and Geingob will today witness the signing of the seven bilateral agreements aimed at boosting trade between the two countries.
Some of agreements include terms of reference for joint trade and economic committee between the two countries, co-operation on the promotion of small and medium enterprises development and mutual customs assistance agreement.
Other agreements include the sharing of information, and another between the Zimbabwe National Chamber of Commerce (ZNCC) and Namibia Chamber of Commerce and Industry (NCCI).
Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Trade Dr Sibusiso Moyo said the agreements will strengthen existing economic ties between Zimbabwe and Namibia.
“We had various discussions, from political, economic and social in the joint commission”.
I can assure you that it was a gorgeous discourse with our counterparts and we ended up with seven agreements which are going to be signed tomorrow in the presence of the Heads of State
“These (agreements) will definitely invigorate economic relations between the two countries,” he said.
Dr Moyo revealed that Namibia had expressed interest in importing horticultural products from Zimbabwe.
“They are also very eager to import quite a lot of our vegetables and citrus fruits. These are some of the issues that they want from our country.
“The good thing about it is that we have been accompanied by a business delegation from the Zimbabwe National Chamber of Commerce which is also going to sign its own agreement with Namibia Chamber of Commerce and Industry.
Namibia Press Secretary Alfredo Tjiurimo Hengari described President Mnangagwa’s visit as “…an opportunity to further strengthen bilateral relations between Namibia and Zimbabwe, including new possible areas of cooperation”.
President Mnangagwa’s visit will also see him officially opening the Zimbabwe’s Dry Port Facility at Walvis Bay tomorrow.
The US $3,5million Port was built on a 19 000 square metre piece of land given to Zimbabwe by the Namibian Government on a lease agreement of over 50 years.
Dr Moyo said the Dry Port facility has potential to open a strategic gateway to the sea for Zimbabwean industries.
“We believe it (Dry Port) is very critical. It provides shorter routes to West Africa, South America and Europe.
“What is important is that our industrialists must now get organised and explore logistics options which are competitive in terms of their markets.
“We are expecting that as we have our diplomats out there they are going to seek markets which will then be feeding back into the country so that we can move products using the Dry Port Facility, said Dr Moyo..
He said Zimbabwean companies should take advantage of the Dry Port Facility to export their products nd also import raw materials.
Zimbabwe’s trade volumes through the Port of Walvis Bay were estimated to have grown to about 2 500 tonnes per month in 2008.
The Walvis Bay Corridor has been viewed as alternative to link Zimbabwe to Europe, North America as well as South America.
President Mnangagwa is accompanied by Information, Media and Broadcasting Services Minister Monica Mutsvangwa among other top Government officials.–chroncile.coz.w