SA unrest cuts off Zim supply chains

THE manufacturing sector is in disarray following violent clashes in South Africa in recent weeks, which have affected the supply of critical raw materials.


The Confederation of Zimbabwe Industries (CZI), in a new report titled Impact of Disturbances in South Africa, says the torching of trucks and barricading of roads in the neighbouring country have crippled the supply chain locally.


The unrest in South Africa was triggered by the jailing of that country’s former president Jacob Zuma for contempt of court on July 8.

The South African authorities have managed to quell the protests following deployment of over 10 000 soldiers to KwaZulu-Natal and Gauteng provinces.


“Majority of our imports come from South Africa, including critical raw materials. Torching of trucks and closing of roads is resulting in supply chain disruptions. There have been delays in the movement of cargo and, in some instances, a complete shutdown,” reads the CZI report released on Monday.


Production will be greatly affected in Zimbabwe because our companies depend heavily on South Africa for raw materials. A trade dimensions study on the impact of Covid-19 done by CZI in 2020 highlights the exposure of local firms to imported raw materials.


According to the study, 58% of imported raw materials come from South Africa.


“If we exclude fuel, electricity and machinery from our imports, South Africa accounts for almost 80% of our imports.”


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