Bilateral relations between Zimbabwe and Japan have given birth to the Zimbabwe-Japan Friendship Association specifically to expand the effectiveness of small and medium enterprises (SMEs) in the economy under the Kaizen concept which was successfully implemented and transformed the Japanese economy.

SMEs world over are seen as the engines for economic growth, and Zimbabwe is no exception, hence the need for SMEs to achieve quality improvement on their products and services while also increasing productivity.

This is the message carried by the Japanese partners who revealed the concept anchored on five principles that is set, sort, shine, standardise and sustain and dubbed 5s-Kaizen.

Zimbabwe’s SMEs are hoping to pick up the Kaizen Concept and implement it to improve mechanisms that will enhance their productivity.

Most SMEs have failed to penetrate regional and international markets as their products rate below export standards due to challenges either to do with quality, packaging or sustenance and the 5s-Kaizen total quality management approach is hoped to address this.