Bilateral and economic relations between Zimbabwe and Japan are set to move to a higher level when a business delegation, comprising 11 Japanese companies, jets into the country in 2 weeks time.
Speaking at the Munhumutapa Offices where he had paid a courtesy call to Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai, the Japanese Ambassador to Zimbabwe, Mr Koichi Morita, said the business delegationâ€™s visit on the 16th of November will enhance the economic and bilateral ties between Zimbabwe and Japan.Â
â€œA high-level business delegation is coming here in two weeks time.Â Eleven companies from different sectors will be represented in the delegation and I am hopeful that the visit will culminate in more business deals being worked out between the Japanese business people and the locals,â€ said Mr Morita.
Earlier, Prime Minister Tsvangirai held a closed-door meeting with the United Nations World Food Programme (UN-WFP) Regional Director for Southern, Eastern and Central Africa, Mr Mustapha Darboe, who was accompanied by the WFP country representative, Mr Felix Bamezon.
Speaking to journalists after emerging fromÂ the meeting, Mr Darboe commended the excellent relationship that exists between the Zimbabwean government and the WFP, which he said have made the operations of his organisations in the country much easier.
â€œThe Zimbabwean government has accorded the WFP a flexible working arrangement that we appreciate. WFP is apolitical and we work to assist the vulnerable, especially in cases where there are food shortages,â€ Mr Darboe said.
Bata Shoe Company Vice President Finance and Special Projects, Mr Tim Jude, who was accompanied by Bata Zimbabwe Managing Director, Mr Luis Pinto, was the second delegation to call on the premier.
Mr Jude said Zimbabwe is a good country to do business, adding that the countryâ€™s economy which is on the brisk of stabilisation is so encouraging.
â€œWe are encouraged by the working environment that we have experienced all the years that we have operated in this country. We are hoping that Bata Zimbabwe will go back to operating at full capacity soon and we are satisfied with the progress made so far in bringing the Zimbabwean economy back on track,â€ said Mr Jude.
The shoe company, which has been operating in the country for the past 70 years, has a factory in Gweru which employs around 1600 people despite its current operating capacity of 40%.