Bulawayo industrialists have welcomed the government’s initiative of having a second phase of the Distressed Industries and Marginalised Areas Fund (DIMAF), saying it will help to increase capacity utilisation in the city’s industries.

As part of efforts of reviving Bulawayo industries through the special economic zones concept, the proposed DIMAF phase two is set to bring a sigh of relief to local industry players who continue to be haunted by diminishing working capital.

Speaking to the ZBC News, the Confederation of Zimbabwe Industries (CZI) Matebeleland chapter President, Mr Joseph Gunda said it is important to capacitate local companies for them to be competitive in their respective sectors.

“DIMAF is very important for the industry and we believe if it is relaunched, it will certainly compliment the SEZ concept in terms of re-tooling those companies that have been limping along,” Mr Gunda said.

After opening gates for foreign investors, the government has pledged to look for sources of funding with low interest rates for local companies to re-tool and enhance their capacity utilisation and withstand market competition.

Currently, the industrial sectors that continue to tick include engineering, pharmaceutical, rubber plastic, beef and leather production.