Hwange (New Ziana) –Leather manufacturers in Matabeleland North province received a major boost recently when the African Development Bank (ADB) gave them 40 machines under a project aimed at increasing their production.
Speaking during the handover ceremony, Industry and Commerce permanent secretary Dr Mavis Sibanda said the intervention was an outcome of combined stakeholder efforts to boost the capacity of the local leather manufacturers.
“The machines you are witnessing today are meant to change the livelihoods of people in Matabeleland North. In total, 40 machines were bought for leather products manufacturing trainees in the value chain,” she said.
Dr Sibanda said the machines would be distributed in all the districts in the province and would result in the establishment of 10 mini-factories.
She said livestock farmers had also benefited from the project after they received large quantities of drugs.
“Livestock farmers have also received a boost in terms of access to drugs with up to 80 000 cattle expected to be vaccinated to preserve high quality of hides on a continuous basis. Under the programme, farmers have been trained on hand spraying drugs,” she said.
The project seeks to ride on milestones achieved so far, which include designing of a Livestock Identification and Traceability System (LITS), rehabilitation of dip tanks, provision of dipping chemicals and participation of leather manufacturers at the Zimbabwe International Trade Fair.