The Harare City Council has launched a policy to support Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) and illegal traders across the city.

The policy includes initiatives like the introduction of a revolving fund for SME traders, infrastructure development plans, and the creation of 150,000 more trading places.

The policy aims to formalize the SME sector by allowing for mixed use of most council premises.

This will benefit all SMEs, including vendors across the city, providing them access to formal trading spaces and boosting economic growth in the city.

With the country’s economy being highly informal, the issue of vendors has been a thorn in the flesh for the local authority.

Though now a common feature in Harare and other towns, Zimbabwean laws do not permit street vending in undesignated places such as pavements, street islands and traffic intersections.

Those intending to carry out vending activities are encouraged to apply to council for allocation of space in the designated vending sites, however with the rapid growth of the informal sector, there is limited space available.

Over the years, wars have erupted in Harare Central Business District between municipal police and vendors, as the authorities try to bring sanity.