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Oleh/By		:	DATO' SERI DR. MAHATHIR BIN MOHAMAD 
Tempat/Venue 	: 	BULAWAYO, ZIMBABWE 
Tarikh/Date 	: 	29/04/94 
Tajuk/Title  	: 	THE OFFICIAL LAUNCH OF THE 1994 
			ZIMBABWE INTERNATIONAL TRADE FAIR 



 His Excellency Robert Mugabe,
President of the Republic of Zimbabwe;
Excellencies;
Ladies and Gentlemen,
    I wish to take this opportunity to thank the Government
of  Zimbabwe and the organisers of this Fair for inviting me
to the official launching of the 1994 Zimbabwe International
Trade Fair, a premier trade event in  Africa.    I  had  the
privilege  of  touring the Fair ground this morning and I am
impressed with the number of foreign companies and countries
participating in the Fair which reflects the effort  of  the
organisers.
2.   The 1994 Zimbabwe International Trade Fair has an added
significance  for  the  city  and  people of Bulawayo, since
Bulawayo this year is also celebrating its Centenary.  May I
congratulate the City of Bulawayo and  its  people  for  the
achievements  of the last 100 years and wish them prosperity
for the years ahead.
Excellencies, Ladies and Gentlemen,
3.       Most  of   the   well-known   and   well-patronised
international   trade   fairs  are  held  in  the  developed
countries.   These trade fairs are  largely  private  sector
undertakings  with  minimal State involvement.  They promise
extensive  business  contacts   between   participants   and
visitors.    Producers  from  both  developed and developing
countries await  these  events  for  they  realise  that  by
participating,   they   will   generally  obtain  reasonable
exposure and reap monetary returns.  In short, participation
in international trade fairs has been adopted by many as  an
effective marketing instrument.
4.      On the other hand, international trade fairs held in
developing  countries  are  lesser  known,   especially   to
producers of other developing countries.  This is partly due
to  the uncertainty over market prospects.  Indeed, the lack
of information on the absorptive capacities  and  production
capabilities  of  each  other,  has hampered trade relations
among developing countries.  It is for this reason that  the
G-15   has  established  the  South  Investment,  Trade  and
Technology Data Exchange Centre (SITTDEC) in Kuala Lumpur to
enable entrepreneurs in developing countries to have  access
to  relevant  information that would enable them to identify
new markets and sources of supplies.
5.   The Zimbabwe International Trade Fair is  an  important
showcase  for  exporters  of  countries  of  the  South with
products for the markets in  the  region.    It  provides  a
relevant   marketplace  for  the  businessmen  to  meet  and
interact with  one  another  to  identify  areas  of  common
interest and to enhance South-South Cooperation.
6.     There are certainly many areas of economic activities
where producers in developing countries can  be  competitive
globally.    However due to various reasons, among them lack
of  knowledge  of  market  opportunities   and   appropriate
technology,  preoccupation  with  the  domestic  market, and
overdependence on traditional foreign buyers and  suppliers,
their  resilience  has  been  undermined  and  their horizon
narrowed.    Many  developing  countries,  and  even   those
clasified as least developed, are rich in natural resources.
If  countries  with  lesser  endowment  can attain developed
economic  status,  there  is  no  reason  to  believe   that
countries  of  the  South  cannot attain a greater degree of
development.
7.    I am happy to note that the  government  of  Zimbabwe,
through  its  various  agencies, is an active partner in the
organisation of the 1994 Zimbabwe International Trade  Fair.
Support from the government in terms of publicity undertaken
by the Zimbabwean Missions overseas, and the facilitating of
movement of foreign exhibits and participants at the Customs
and  Immigration  borders have contributed to the successful
organisation of this Fair.  I am confident that more foreign
participation will be forthcoming in the future.  This  will
augur  well for Zimbabwe.  Foreign participants to this Fair
will be exploring not only export  opportunities,  but  also
import  and  investment possibilities in Zimbabwe.  It is my
hope that interactions and  discussions  between  the  Trade
Fair  participants and trade visitors will extend beyond the
short period we are here.  There is so much  that  they  can
learn from each other that can be mutually beneficial.
Excellencies, Ladies and Gentlemen,
8.    I understand that the Government of Zimbabwe is making
all efforts to liberalise the economy and  trade  regime  in
line with current global trade liberalisation measures.  The
Economic  Structural  Adjustment  Programme  of  Zimbabwe is
indeed a move in the right  direction  and  we  in  Malaysia
support  it.    Furthermore,  Zimbabwe  is  a  member of the
Southern African Development Community and the  Preferential
Trade  Area, which has a combined population of 200 million.
This offers tremendous potential for  investment  and  trade
for   businessmen   from  outside  this  region.    Zimbabwe
certainly has enough attributes to become one of  the  major
gateways to this region.
9.     To all foreign participants, I wish that your trip to
Bulawayo is a profitable one and  hope  that  your  presence
here  will  enhance trade relations between Zimbabwe and the
countries  you  are  representing.     To   all   Zimbabwean
participants,  I  would  urge  you to consider participating
actively in international trade fairs  in  other  developing
countries,  so  that  your  capabilities  to supply to their
needs can also be better known.
Excellencies, Ladies and Gentlemen,
10.  It is now my honour to declare open the  1994  Zimbabwe
International Trade Fair.

 
 



 
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