Analysing the impact of public procurement preference schemes on economic development: a case of small to medium enterprises in Gweru
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SMEs in Zimbabwe play a very crucial role in the economy of Zimbabwe through employment creation, income distribution and contribution to the Gross Domestic Product. Despite this critical role, SMEs face difficulties in accessing public tenders. They are numerous challenges such competition which threaten their continued existence. The current procurement laws policies are inadequate to protect and nurture them. The objective of the study was to explore the extent to which the country had used public procurement as a tool to achieve its economic objectives. Literature revealed that there were various procurement preferences schemes intended for SMEs that have been successfully implemented in the developed world. The study used a mixed method research approach to collect and analyse data. The study was guided by the Pragmatic paradigm. Data were collected from two sets of respondents, that is, the SMEs representatives and the public procurement officials through structure and semi structured questions. The main findings were that there was no policy to guide the use public procurement to assist SMEs. The Researcher made some recommendations to ensure the success of the use of public procurement as a development tool. The recommendations included the need to come with a clear policy on how public procurement can be used to help SMEs grow.