BULAWAYO, Chinese firms should take advantage of the vast business opportunities that exist in Zimbabwe, and intensify investment into the southern African country, Chinese ambassador to Zimbabwe, Huang Ping, said.

He told Xinhua at the annual 2017 Zimbabwe International Trade Fair (ZITF), in the second largest city of Bulawayo, that, Chinese firms should invest not only in agriculture, the backbone of Zimbabwe's economy, but in the industrial sector, as well, to help speed up economic development in the country.

This year's ZITF ran from Apr 25-29, under the theme: "Harnessing Linkages for Industrial Development."

He said, the embassy was enhancing information dissemination about business opportunities in Zimbabwe, to the Chinese business people, so as to attract many Chinese investors.

"We are bringing more Chinese business delegations to Zimbabwe, to explore the potential of future cooperation. The opportunities are plenty but we need to do more to let the people back in China know the opportunities," he added.

He commended one of the Chinese companies in Zimbabwe, Inspur, saying, it was playing a part in the development of Zimbabwe's economy.

Inspur is a state-owned Chinese firm that provides integrated information and communication technology (ICT) services. It began operations in Zimbabwe in 2011, and is one of several Chinese companies that are exhibiting at this year's ZITF.

An official at Inspur, Joseph Qiu, said, they were using Zimbabwe's premier trade showcase, ZITF, to market their products to Zimbabwean customers.

"The main purpose of our exhibition here is to let government ministries and other customers to get familiar with our products," Qiu said.

The firm has been exhibiting at the trade event for the past four years. Qiu said, Zimbabwe's ICT sector, when compared to other countries in southern Africa, offered good business opportunities for Chinese firms.

A cement manufacturing firm recently set up in Zimbabwe, LiveTouch Investments, exhibited for the first time at this year's ZIFT, where it sought to market its products to the Zimbabwean market.

Chief executive officer Wang Dongming told Xinhua that the Zimbabwean market was promising, given the vast infrastructure projects planned, that include upgrading of major highways and rehabilitation of city roads and other infrastructure that were damaged by heavy rains this year.

"We are a relevant small-scale cement factory and our advantage is that we offer acceptable price and the best quality," Wang said.