Building a future with decent work for youth

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Carpentry & Joinery

Ironically, as the recession in Zimbabwe aggravated, larger formal furniture companies plunged into a viability crisis, which saw them scaling down operations or closing down and surrendering market share. With amazing resilience, the small-scale furniture makers stepped into the void and struck lucrative supply and procurement deals with furniture retailers who, for the first time, began to stock products from an industry previously considered a grey market. The economic crisis also eroded incomes such that the demand for low-cost, home-made household and office furniture increased.

Today the recovery of the larger and formal furniture makers through recapitalisation initiatives has not been enough to dislodge the small entrepreneurs. Industry experts argue that nearly 90% of furniture retailers still have no manufacturing plants and solely rely on either imports or small scale furniture makers. The ‘secondary' informal industry is now more integrated with the formal economy through supply links that cut across the value chain. Youth in Glen View, Harare and Kelvin North, Bulawayo are bubbling under Carpentry and Joinery Master Craftpersons to gain wage or self employment in the furniture industry.