Leonard Ncube in Victoria Falls
THE 5th Standard Association of Zimbabwe (SAZ) Business Leaders Conference kicked off here yesterday amid calls for local business to adhere to standards so as to attract international markets and lure Foreign Direct Investment (FDI).
President Mnangagwa is one of the high profile speakers expected to officiate at the event today.
In her welcome remarks, SAZ president Dr Eve Gadzikwa, said the conference offers opportunity for businesses to reflect on how they can contribute to economic development, especially at a time when the country is pushing the “Zimbabwe is open for business” mantra.
“This is a platform for to discuss on topical issues as we focus on viability and sustainability. As Zimbabwe goes forward, it’s important for organisations to be viable and sustainable as well as take note of developments taking place in State Owned Enterprises (SOEs) to see how standards can play a role,” she said.
Dr Gadzikwa said standards were critical to business as they leverage on marketing strategies. She said the forum will discuss how standards can play a role in the procurement process to ensure limited resources are put to good use and improve livelihoods.
Institute of Chartered Accountants of Zimbabwe (ICAZ) president Mr Tapiwa Chizana challenged businesses to adhere to standards to be able to attract increased international appeal.
“We have to lead organisations in a manner that puts the best for the economy. Many of us are excited by the ‘Zimbabwe is open for business’ mantra and to receive foreign direct investment but the question is, are we ISO certified?” This is the language that investors understand and we need to comply before we think of attracting FDI,” said Mr Chizana.
“Being certified is a degree of integrity. Sustaining a profitable business requires customer trust and as business leaders we have an opportunity to rewrite the narrative and market Zimbabwe as a country that is genuinely open for business.”
The conference ends tomorrow and has a fully packed programme with local and international speakers, as it seeks to give ideas on how the Zimbabwean economy can move forward. The theme is: “Standards create shared future for sustainable socio-economic development.”
Permanent secretary for corporate governance in the Office of the President and Cabinet Ambassador Stuart Comberbach was part of yesterday’s proceedings.
Source : The Herald