Francistown has positioned itself to become the country’s economic hub by the year 2019. This follows its groundbreaking investment forum held in August under the theme, ‘City of Francistown: An investment centre of choice by 2022- A step forward to your investment,’ which discussed ideas to reach this ambitious milestone.
Marketing and sales director at the investment forum Gadzanani Makopola said that there is no way they are going to forget 2014 because it’s the year that they came up with something that will make Francistown an economic hub of Batswana in the next five years. Makopola said that since they hosted the forum in August they have seen a lot of interest from investors both local and outside, which shows that they are on the right track.
The city of Francistown is strategically positioned to be a gateway to many unearthed economic possibilities in the northern part of Botswana, all the way to the Chobe area, Okavango, Makgadikgadi and the eastern part of the country which boast the biggest dams with great tourism potential and beyond. Over 70 percent of Botswana’s mining activity takes place in northern Botswana, with Francistown as the regional administrative and commercial centre.
Francistown is also a key player in Botswana’s agricultural industry. “After the investment forum that was held in August we managed to exhibit our stall at the Global Expo in Gaborone and the response we got was overwhelming, they told us that Francistown seem to be set to surpass other cities looking at our objectives and we got encouraging feedback so I am sure in 2015 we will hear success stories because of the foundation we laid in 2014,” Makopola said. He said they had also set a trend, as they have already hosted a delegation from Malaysia wishing to benchmark on them.
“They said that Francistown is better organised and the strategies that it has can make investors come to the city hence they want to benchmark for their country too.” Shoshong also called them to come present their objectives since they also want to develop their village. The chairman of the investment forum James Kgalajwe said that the forum is the first major milestone that will make people appreciate the investment climate as well as appreciate the strategies and opportunities that are available in the region. He said that they have so far established the structures of the company and by next April they will be appointing CEO to run the investments forum.