AN official representative of Belarusian manufacturing plants Mr Vadim Zhuk has set the record straight with regards to the cooperation of the Zimbabwe and Belarus for the production and assembly of passenger buses.
In accordance with the agreements reached between President Mnangagwa and the President of Belarus Alexander Lukashenko in January 2019 during the official visit of the delegation of Zimbabwe to Belarus, a project is currently being implemented to organise the joint production of passenger buses in Zimbabwe said Mr Zhuk in a statement to the State media.
He clarified that to date, the following work has been done and the following results have been achieved:
1. Exchange visits carried out. Zimbabwean specialists visited the Republic of Belarus and the MAZ plant, which has been producing buses and trucks for over 75 years and employs more than 18 000 people.
Belarusian specialists visited the Republic of Zimbabwe and studied the possibility of creating an assembly production of buses on the basis of the enterprise AVM Africa.
2. The technical specification has been signed and approved for buses that will be produced in Zimbabwe. This technical specification has been compiled taking into account the requirements of the Zimbabwean side, as well as taking into account the experience of the company AVM Africa, which has made a number of proposals and improvements to buses taking into account the existing experience.
3. The production facilities of AVM Africa which will be used to assembly of buses were certified. The type of equipment with which it is necessary to equip the production facility has been determined.
4. The possibility of using local components for the production of buses has been determined. Thus, components manufactured by the Republic of Zimbabwe will also be used in the manufactured buses.
5. The Republic of Belarus has confirmed its readiness to transfer technologies and know-how at no cost
6. A decision was made to sell buses to be produced in Zimbabwe to the markets of third world countries in South and East Africa.
Mr Zhao further explained that cooperation of the Republic of Belarus and the Republic of Zimbabwe does not involve the supply of READY-MADE BUSES, but their PRODUCTION in the Republic of Zimbabwe using local components and involving local specialists.
He said the project will create additional jobs, train Zimbabwean specialists in modern technologies in mechanical engineering, and increase the flow of foreign currency in Zimbabwe by exporting buses produced in Zimbabwe to other countries on the African continent.
Mr Zhao highlighted that it should also be noted that so far none of the busses from Belarus has been delivered to Zimbabwe, but only an action plan for the organisation of the production of buses in Zimbabwe is being agreed on according to the instruction of both governments.