Government Slashes Import Tariffs For Basic Commodities To Tame Soaring Prices
The government has announced that it has slashed import tariffs for basic commodities for citizens in the wake of skyrocketing prices across the country.
The latest round of prices soaring was catapulted by last week’s announcement by President Mnangagwa that the government had temporarily suspended the lending of money by banks to public, private institutions and individuals. Prior to that announcement, the deterioration of the Zimbabwean dollar (ZWL), resulting in higher inflation, forced prices to jump.
Speaking in a statement released yesterday, Finance and Economic Development minister Prof. Mthuli Ncube said this measure seeks to allow citizens access to affordable goods.
To ensure that citizens have access to affordable basic commodities, in the face of recent substantial price increases in the shops, the Government hereby opens up imports of basic commodities by citizens through the lowering of import tariffs and other accompanying measures. This is with immediate effect.
Professor Ncube said those with free funds are permitted to import basics.
The government further announced that it is now paying an incentive to farmers who deliver grain early.
In the quest to incentivise farmers and encourage early deliveries of maize and other grains to the Grain Marketing Board, Government has taken the decision to pay maize farmers 30℅ of the amount due on grain delivered in United States Dollars and 70℅ in Zimbabwe dollars.
The US dollar payment will be calculated at the prevailing willing-buyer-willing-seller rate published by the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe on the date of delivery.
Before this statement by Government, soaps, lotions, and carbonated beverages for resale were some of the goods whose importation was prohibited by the Zimbabwe Revenue Authority (ZIMRA). Other basic commodities could be imported, but their tariffs were set up higher to make them more expensive, hence driving Zimbabweans to buy locally-produced goods.
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