meeting.jpgLocal firms from both the private sector have been encouraged to prioritise corporate social responsibility programmes and work closely with local communities where they operate in order to attain sustainable economic development.

The call comes at a time when there has been growing concern over failure by some companies particularly those in the mining sector to give back to local communities as well as to employ locals in their operations.

In a key-note address at the two-day Victory Business Conference which was attended by chief executive officers from the private sector, the Minister of Environment and Natural Resources Management, Cde. Francis Nhema appealed to the corporate world to prioritise engagement with locals for the attainment of sustainable economic development.

“There has always been concern that locals are being sidelined in the economic activities within their areas. There should thus be a change in our attitude and ensue that we create long lasting partnerships with the locals for us to attain sustainable development,” he said.

Government has however committed itself to the implementation of several strategies aimed at ensuring that the country fully benefits from its resources including the indigenisation and empowerment programme currently underway.