Zimbabwe News and Internet Radio

Import controls on basics relaxed

By Farirai Machivenyika

Government has relaxed regulations on the importation of basic commodities into Zimbabwe and has invited people and organisations with free funds to approach the Industry and Commerce Ministry to obtain licences to import the goods.

Industry and Commerce Minister Mike Bimha
Industry and Commerce Minister Mike Bimha

Speaking at a press conference to address measures that Government had taken to ensure availability of basic commodities and stabilise prices ahead of the festive season, Industry and Commerce Minister Dr Mike Bimha (pictured left)said his ministry was ready to process permits and licences for importers.

Prices of basic commodities have been rising in the past two months due to foreign currency shortages that have seen manufacturers struggling to get hard currency to procure basic commodities.

“What we would want to announce today is that, we want to call upon companies and individuals who have free funds to import basic commodities and my ministry is ready to process permits and licences to that effect.

“You will recall that some of the basic commodities were removed from the Open General Import Licence and were now covered under various Statutory Instruments including SI 64 of 2016.

“But as we had said time and time again these SIs such SI64 of 2016 were not intended to ban the importation of products but were intended to regulate their importation and where we believe that there is demand exceeding supply we will obviously want to facilitate the importation of such commodities which is the case in point because of the demand as a result of the coming festive season and again because of the limited foreign currency available to local producers we would want to make sure that those with free funds be they individuals or companies they should come forward to obtain the necessary permits and licences to bring products into the market,” Minister Bimha said yesterday.

He added that the Cabinet task force monitoring prices would also meet this week to receive reports from inspectors monitoring prices of the basic commodities.

“We have increased the number of inspectors who have been going around monitoring prices and recording the same and we are of the view that sometime this week by Wednesday our taskforce will meet again to review progress now that a lot of information would have been made available.

“But the information we have received so far is that there are sectors and companies that have increased prices without any justification and some of these companies are in the brickmaking industry, some of them in the packaging, some of them the pharmaceuticals. What is disturbing, though, is that some of these companies are companies that are getting a lot of support from Government,” he said.

Dr Bimha said Government would not hesitate to take action against companies that were raising prices without just cause.

“While Government is committed to supporting local producers Government cannot watch such companies profiteering for their own interest. We are not averse to price increases, but we believe price increases should happen where there is justification. There are number of measures that Government can take, but our approach is really not to come up with a blanket intervention.

“We would want to isolate the culprits and deal with them individually. If it is the entire sector we will then address them as a sector. Most of our companies have licences that govern their operations and if we believe that some of these companies do not want to operate like other responsible companies we will not hesitate to withdraw their licences and take other necessary measures.

“So when we meet this week as a taskforce we will be able to identify such culprits and decide on what action to take,” he said. The Herald

  • what about cars

  • What happened to the bumper harvest?

  • Bheta

  • Zanu pf gvt is full of confusion, it had banned the importation of basic goods on the basis of promoting what it call zim asset and its indigenisation local companies, now it made a U-turn again. What a weaked leaderhip

    • Are they going to compensate those who lost their goods because of their confusion

    • You see noow, their statutory instruments whch they change to suit their environments has distroyed Zimbabwe socially and economicaly, hapana zvinongoomera isu chigamba pamusoro pechimwe.

    • You see noow, their statutory instruments whch they put to suit their environments has distroyed Zimbabwe socially and economicaly, hapana zvinongoomera isu chigamba pamusoro pechimwe.

  • Go hang mabroka garwe ran away nebag itai tione

  • Relax car importation too. We don’t have even one assembling plant working in Zimbabwe.

  • Scrap the license issue and widen the importation base.

    • Let the local companies compete for their market share. From the time imports were banned we experienced a sharp increase in prices of basic commodities a clear indication of mischief by our local industry. They are getting foreign currency from the RBZ to import raw materials and duty free on top to some selected industries. If we say capacity utilisation of our industries is below 50% the deficit has to be filled by imports. Statutory Instrument 164 has failed to serve the purpose rather shortages have been created.

    • Exactly!

    • This licensing thing breeds corruption.

  • yhaaa ko pamaiti zvinhu tinogadzira muno maiwe mazviwanepi waroyi ini wagaratia munotanga nekugona mopedza ekutadza dai zvirizvo zvamakaita kare

  • Ko dzungu raimbove reiko iwee bimha

  • We are back in 2007. Without removing The Bond Note/ Zim dollar, the local currency will just lose more value every day. Anyone bringing in their foreign currency will need to quickly convert their worthless Bond Note/Ecocash balances and bank balances into hard currencies. They can’t rig the economy as it is the ultimate king.

  • APA madhara munenge magona chingotii chero nokuti Zimra yakaguta kare

  • And at the same time this adds fire to the already on fire bond note!

  • Good

  • We don’t need licences you assholes because we know the authorities are full of blackmail and bribery and corruption.Screw you!

  • Try as you may. The major stack holders (citizens)don’t trust the current board. So anything it needs to get done won’t be approved. Bring an acceptable, approved board & you see things getting done that are so difficulty now. The major stack holders will give all the support necessary to get the board projects done. Mountains will be moved. Rivers will be dug. As for the current board anything it attempts there’s always an opposing counter attempt or a negative plan B in place to counter it. So nothing moves. The best for now is to let the major stack holders run the economy the way they see fit, with little interference from you.

  • Very good move. Relax importation of all commodities so that local companies will be forced to produce quality goods and compete on pricing.

  • It had no logic at all to ban imported basics when the minister knows exactly that the industries are dead and buried in Zimbabwe

  • Weldone

  • Wy need a license in the first place? Zvarema ka? Kkkkkkkk

  • Hahahaha what happened to the local industry you tried to protect???…..

  • Away with those import bans

  • Ma import permits means paying a bribe….if they are one s free funds why apply for permit..round and round in circles

  • Get ready for roller coaster ride 😊😊

  • Scrap the license issue

  • Bisa maban mahani our local companies are busy hiking prices because of those bans

  • That’s a noble idea. Local producers must compete physically. And not be snuggled by the Government. If a younger bird is struggling to come out of the shell. Don’t break the Shell. It’s part of its life development. I believe if we do away with the bond currency and use hard multi currency system wisely. The market forces will stabilize for the better of our economy. And the free rein currency policy can boost foreign currency in flaws. Hence the increased in flaw of all basic commodities including agro inputs. But there must be checks against counterfeit goods and substard items. But the lively hood of all citizens will improve drastically.

  • License reiko itai duty free

  • Varombo mati tidiiko ?

  • Zvapresser