Oliver Kazunga Business Reporter
THE Confederation of Zimbabwe Industries (CZI) has started conducting its annual manufacturing sector survey to gauge productivity.
CZI president Mr Charles Msipa said results of the survey were expected next month.“The manufacturing sector survey is already underway and questionnaires have been sent to different companies in the sector throughout the country. We expect results of the survey by mid September,” he said.
The survey focuses on measuring companies’ production levels against the installed plant capacity, capital investment at the company and the general infrastructure assessment.
“It also measures the quality of human capital and labour as well as export levels for those that are into exporting,” he said.
Asked about his general assessment of the economy in the first six months of the year, Mr Msipa said the economy showed signs of a slow down.
He said this was due to a number of challenges bedevilling the economy.
The liberalisation of the economy and adoption of a multi-currency system in February 2009 ushered a new era for economic revival.
Capacity utilisation in the manufacturing sector improved from an average of 10 percent in 2009 to 57,3 percent in 2011 before slipping to 44,2 percent last year.
Persistent liquidity and power challenges in the economy among other fundamentals have continued to weigh down efforts to increase productivity in the local industrial sector to competitive levels.
As a result of signs of economic slow-down between January and June this year, Mr Msipa said capacity utilisation in the manufacturing sector is likely to drop further this year.
The next CZI annual congress to run under the theme, “Imperatives for reversing de-industrialisation,” scheduled for Bulawayo in September is expected to focus on developing strategies to improve productivity in the manufacturing sector.
Zimbabwe has in the past four years become a net importer of basic commodities because of low capacity utilisation in the manufacturing sector.
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