A Chinese condom manufacturer says it is considering making its products in different sizes after Zimbabwe’s health minister complained that contraceptives made in China and exported to the African nation were too small for its men.
Health Minister David Parirenyatwa made the comments at an event in the capital Harare last week to promote HIV/Aids prevention, according to the website New Zimbabwe.com.
“The southern African region has the highest incidence of HIV and we are promoting the use of condoms,” Parirenyatwa was quoted as saying.
“Youths now have a particular condom that they like, but we don’t manufacture them. We import condoms from China and some men complain they are too small.”
Parirenyatwa added that Zimbabwean firms should look at making condoms rather than relying on imports.
Zhao Chuan, the chief executive of the condom manufacturer Beijing Daxiang and His Friends Technology Co, told the South China Morning Post the firm was planning to make contraceptives in different sizes.
“As to the different demands from customers such as in Zimbabwe, Daxiang, as a Chinese manufacturer, has the ability and the obligation to make a contribution, so we have started to do some surveys on users’ data in the region to make preparations for future products with different sizes,” Zhao said in an email.
Zhao said that customers around the world had different requirements, with Chinese men preferring thinner condoms while not worrying about the size, while customers in North America liked a softer contraceptive.
Zimbabwe is one of the countries in Sub-Saharan Africa worst affected by HIV/Aids, with an estimated 13.5 per cent of its adult population infected with the virus.
The use of condoms is a key way to limit the spread of infection. The country has become one of the top five condom importers in the world, according to local media reports.
China is one of the world’s largest condoms producers, according to National Health and Family Planning Commission.
The nation has about 300 condom manufacturers producing about 3 billion of the contraceptives each year.