I wish to extend my sincere appreciation to the government for its plans to promote pottery to widen the export base. The move will not only bring income to the potters but will also create employment among those involved in exporting the products.
Secondly, pottery is perceived as a sector that is too locally oriented and purposely geared towards a particular class of people. Consequently, the promotion of pottery will directly bring in more foreign exchange, thus ensuring that poor potters have a reason to smile.
However, as the minister of Trade Francois Kanimba pointed out, potters still lack technological expertise to make quality products which can compete favourably with ware, for example, from China and other Asian countries.
There is, therefore, need to support potters’ cooperatives to access machinery to improve on the quality of their products.
I also wish to commend the government’s efforts to ensure that these cooperatives are fully supported, which has increased rural access to finance and improved their incomes.
In addition, the One Village One Product-OVOP program, which is aimed at ensuring that at least one village produces one product for sale will further boost rural production.