Thursday, 08 November 2012

Financial Gazette - Zisunko Ndlovu

Ken Sharpe's proposed US$100 million exquisite shopping complex, which is hoped to be the second largest shopping mall in Africa, is expected to boost tourism activity in the country. The multimillion-dollar emporium, The Mall of Zimbabwe in Borrowdale, Harare, whose total leasable area places it in the ranks of largest shopping malls in Africa and the world, has been described as an alternative complement to the newly launched township tourism. Township tourism was launched by the government by Minister of Tourism, Walter Mzembi, during the recently held Hlanganani/Sanganai Tourism Expo last month. The concept is earmarked to promote tourism in townships away from safaris, game reserves and beaches as the new trend show that visitors are now more attracted to the authentic, urban scenes. According to Ken Sharpe, the chairman of Augur investments, The Mall of Zimbabwe project promoters, the complex will afford many Zimbabweans an opportunity to experience classic shopping, recreation and touring without the hassle of having to travel across the border. Economists contend that the mall is going to signify an economic rebound from the 2008 economic meltdown. It is also an efficient initiative that will see the synchronization of market pricing by breaking market autonomy.