CHINESE enterprises operating in Zimbabwe in collaboration with Stanbic Bank have pledged to create more and better-quality jobs towards boosting economic growth and alleviating poverty through various business and development projects.
China has become a dominant source of investment in the country where it is rolling out a number of high-impact economic projects including partnering with the Government in key infrastructure development initiatives.
Stanbic Bank on one hand has emerged as a critical player in facilitating the financing of major economic projects, as well as enhancing trade between Zimbabwe and China.
Last week Stanbic Bank in partnership with the Chinese Chamber of Enterprises in Zimbabwe (CCEZ) hosted a two-day China-Stanbic Job Fair in Harare, which attracted about 2 000 applicants, predominantly recent university graduates.
The CCEZ is an association of over 80 Chinese business corporations, most of which are listed companies, operating in diverse sectors of the Zimbabwean economy.
Over 30 Chinese enterprises drawn from various sectors such as mining, agriculture, textiles, hospitality, information and technology and construction, among others, participated at the fair.
In a post-event statement, CCEZ vice chairman, Shanel Liu, said the job applicants submitted their CVs and met with employers and company representatives.
Mr Patson Mahatchi
About 20 percent participated in interviews during the fair while more interviews are scheduled for the coming weeks.
“The event was a resounding success as a result of the collaboration between the Chamber of Chinese Enterprises and Stanbic Bank. It has achieved its goal by providing an opportunity for job seekers struggling to find suitable work,” said Liu.
“We share the same belief with Stanbic Bank that creating more and better-quality jobs is key to boosting economic growth, reducing poverty, increasing social stability and assisting business to grow in a healthy direction.”
Liu said Chinese enterprises have invested in Zimbabwe in a wide range of industries hence the inaugural Job Fair has inspired their businesses to invest more in the long term towards the provision of jobs for skilled Zimbabweans and boosting the local economy.
Stanbic Bank’s head of business and commercial clients, Mr Patson Mahatchi, said the Standard Bank Group subsidiary considered Africa and Zimbabwe, in particular, as its home hence the commitment to playing a key role in the economic development.
He said the banking institution was also tapping into the mutually beneficial relationships with CCEZ and its other ties with China through the Industrial and Commercial Bank of China.
This year Stanbic Bank has rolled out a solution that assists companies and individuals in importing from China, which has been well received in the market.
“We are committed to driving the growth of the continent and so when we say Africa is our home, we mean it and as Stanbic Bank, we are well poised to drive the development of the country,” said Mahatchi.
During the fair, Liu said Chinese enterprises were offering salaries that are equivalent or above the industry grading system with truck drivers, for instance, earning between US$400-500, laboratory technicians US$500-800, welders level 4-6 US$300+, electrician level 6 US$350+, blaster US$500, stores clerk US$200 and translator/admin US$600-1200+.
Economic and commercial counsellor at the Chinese Embassy, Huang Minghai, said the fair was a perfect platform for Chinese companies operating in Zimbabwe to allay misconceptions about how unprofessional they operate.
“Most Chinese companies have contributed to the development of the local communities by building hospitals, schools and roads, drilling boreholes, donating foodstuffs and personal protective equipment,” he said.
“Most Chinese employers keep good relationships with local workers. Some allegations of improper practices by a few Chinese employers are mainly because of misunderstandings or cultural differences.”
Minister of Public Service, Labour and Social Welfare, Professor Paul Mavima
In a speech read on his behalf, Minister of Public Service, Labour and Social Welfare, Professor Paul Mavima, said the job fair complemented Government’s efforts to create employment.
“Economic growth and employment creation are at the heart of Government policy thrust,” he said.
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