Inaugural Economic Census launched
Bulawayo (New Ziana)-The Zimbabwe government on Monday launched the inaugural Economic Census which is a comprehensive systematic study to collect detailed information of all economic activities in the country.
The census, to be conducted at five-year intervals to track dynamics in economic activities over time, also enables the government, the private sector, academia and other stakeholders to understand the economic landscape of the country.
Speaking at the launch, Finance and Economic Development Minister Professor Mthuli Ncube said the census will be the first of its kind to be conducted in the country, adding that it will produce comprehensive baseline statistics on the size and structure of the economy.
“The statistics are key for evidence-based policy formulation, decision-making and strategic planning in addition to Gross Domestic Product compilation,” he said.
The scheduled census is expected to run from January 2025 until the end of 2026 with preparatory activities, including mapping of business locations, commencing next year.
Preliminary results are expected by the end of the first quarter 2027, with final results by the end of the second quarter of the same year.
In keeping with the devolution agenda, Ncube said the census will provide valuable insights into the geographical spread of both the business establishments and economic activities across the country.
“The gathered information will be key to the development of a comprehensive Statistical Business Register for use as a sampling frame for subsequent economic surveys,” he said.
He said the census will be conducted for ground truthing of the country`s achievement, at the same time, providing baseline statistics information for the successor National Development Strategy 2 running from 2026-2030.
“Statistics produced from the Census will also inform on progress made towards regional, continental and global initiatives including the Africa Agenda 2063 and Sustainable Development Goals.
“Consistent with the “leaving no one and no place behind” mantra, the 2025 Economic Census will also cover Micro, Small and Medium enterprises (MSMEs). By obtaining data from MSMEs, development initiatives for the sector will be more informed, ultimately making the MSMEs thrive and at the same time, contributing significantly to the economy, he said.
Ncube said the census will be conducted under the provisions of the Census and Statistics Act, adding that international guidelines and standards will also be observed to ensure the data is locally relevant.
Speaking on the same occasion, Minister of State for Bulawayo Metropolitan Province Judith Ncube urged the business community, including micro, small to medium enterprises, to cooperate with ZimStat as they will be collecting data.