Zimbabwe is pretty much still persona non grata in the West. Luckily for us, where there is a West, there is also an East. Our leaders came up with a Look East Policy that targeted strong relations with China especially. Today, 2 decades later, we reap the benefits.
Stanbic Bank Zimbabwe and the Chamber of Chinese Enterprises operating in Zimbabwe will be holding a two-day job fair on the 14th and 15th of October. That’s tomorrow, Friday, and Saturday. The venue: Stanbic Park in Borrowdale.
The fair aims to help locals and our Chinese friends meet and get to know each other.
For the locals
Locals will get the chance to look closer at the operations of Chinese enterprises.
Mr Tapuwa Nyika of Stanbic says participants should get information on positions, business purposes and cultural values of Chinese enterprises. All useful if they are to be employed by said Chinese enterprises.
Even those not currently looking for employment may still find value at the fair. Nyika says the fair also affords the media and public a chance to acquaint themselves with the employment offers by Chinese companies in an open and transparent way.
I must say, I for one need to make an appearance because I have only heard terrible things about the Chinese. In a few cases, I heard first-hand accounts about the abuse some employees face at the hands of some Chinese employers.
It would help if we all understood how these Chinese fellows think. If we can bridge some of the cultural differences, we should be able to work together well. We really need to get it right because the Chinese are not going anywhere and neither are we.
The fair will help with that even as it offers job opportunities for locals. So as locals learn more about the Chinese enterprises, they in turn will be looking to fill some vacancies they have.
For the Chinese enterprises
On the streets the word is the Chinese fly in their brethren to work at their companies instead of hiring locally. That’s not what we want but it is somewhat understandable.
The Chinese may be doing this only because they don’t know how to get good local employees. Those in HR will tell you that although there is a massive pool of job seekers in this country it is still challenging to find good talent.
That’s why employers often seek out people they have worked with or at least heard good things about. That the Chinese would seek out brethren that they are familiar with is therefore understandable.
However, with China being that far away this is not ideal for the Chinese enterprises. It’s expensive to fly in employees from their motherland. In many cases, they would prefer to find local guys to fill some of the positions within their companies.
Apparently, they actually have vacancies they have been failing to fill. Nyika says “most Chinese companies have been struggling to fill various vacancies within their organizations and the job fair will help Chinese companies cover this gap.”
“Most Chinese companies advised the Chamber of Chinese business enterprises that they have various vacant roles they need to find suitable candidates. These roles include translators, drivers, welders among others.”
The fair should expose them to employable locals and maybe we can see more locals getting even non-entry-level jobs at Chinese enterprises.
Nyika says “the two-day job fair is aimed at providing an opportunity for Chinese enterprises to hire local talent and pursue localized development.”
The companies will also be showcasing their products and services. They will also be taking the opportunity to sell us on how their presence here is a net positive for us. They will share with us the contributions they are making towards the economic development of Zimbabwe.
Huawei, ZTE and many more will be there
According to Nyika, all Chinese-owned businesses in Zimbabwe have been invited to participate at the fair and most Chamber of Chinese Enterprises’ member companies will be attending.
Also in attendance will be local enterprises that cooperate with Chinese enterprises and they will be showcasing their own products and services as well.
Of the Chinese companies that will be attending, we mentioned Huawei and ZTE. I’m sure we are all familiar with these two companies.
Other notable companies in attendance include;
- Sino-Hydro – they refurbished Kariba South Hydro Power Station and are upgrading Hwange Power Station.
- Tian Ze Tobacco – responsible for 40% of Zimbabwe’s tobacco exports to China.
- China Jiangsu International – working on the Mugabe International Airport expansion project.
If you wish to attend, you will be pleased to know that there will be no charge for attending. Job seekers can submit their CVs at Stanbic Nelson Mandela, email firstname.lastname@example.org or bring a physical copy to the fair.
Spread the word if you know someone who would be interested.