President Emmerson Mnangagwa has underscored the importance of an effective and reliable regional transport network as key in enhancing trade flows and mobility of factors of production and trade inflows for the success of the industrialisation and integration of the SADC region.

 Addressing guests at the launch of the National Railways of Zimbabwe (NRZ) interim arrangement for recapitalisation in Bulawayo yesterday, President Mnangagwa said his government is working to improve the quality of the SADC regional transport network namely rail, road, air and ports to enhance trade inflows.

Zimbabwe has adopted a strategy to improve its road and rail networks in the face of growing competition with neighbouring countries.

It has also started work on a dry port in Walvis Bay on land donated by the sisterly Republic of Namibia while the relevant ministry has drawn up a plan to upgrade the country’s airports.

President Mnangagwa said in line with SADC guidelines on the Industrialisation Strategy and Roadmap, the Zimbabwe government is committed to ensure modernisation, rehabilitation and refurbishment of the country’s rail system and also establish new networks which penetrate into the region to hasten regional integration and enhance the ability to offer lower transport costs and reducing cost of doing business.

He also reassured workers from the NRZ that issues relating to their welfare and salary arrears will be dealt with and that they should work hard for the parastatal to take off.