Cornered Buy Zimbabwe sings imports tune

BUY Zimbabwe says all stakeholders must co-operate and ensure that the supply of goods and services return to normalcy in the country following the suspension of import restriction measures.


Government last week announced the indefinite suspension of Statutory Instrument (SI) 122 of 2017, which was restricting the importation of certain products that were deemed as readily available locally.

“While being concerned about the potential negative impact of the sudden repeal, Buy Zimbabwe understands the circumstances that have led to this development,” the organisation said in a statement.

“Buy Zimbabwe requests all stakeholders to cooperate and ensure that the supply, availability and affordability of goods and services return to normalcy.
Concurrently, Buy Zimbabwe urges stakeholders to be pro-active in developing a long-term strategy for industrial development and job creation.”

Buy Zimbabwe said from many accounts, in many different sectors impacted by the SI 122, there had been increases in capacity utilisation, employment and revenue for the fiscus, among other positive benefits.

The temporary nature of the SI 122 was well known and its conflict with Zimbabwe’s regional and international obligations have drawn justifiable criticism, it said.

Buy Zimbabwe has been at the forefront of advocating for a more viable, sustainable and internally acceptable industry support system based on incentives for increased value chain-based local production and disincentives for continued importation of finished products and services.

It initiated and largely funded the zero draft “Local Content Policy” produced in 2017.

“The zero draft remains a draft despite a statement of intent in the 2018 national budget. The consequences of inaction are clearly manifest,” it bemoaned.

As the nation moves forward, Buy Zimbabwe urged all stakeholders not to confuse and confound symptoms for the cause and the source of the country’s current problems.

“Buy Zimbabwe urges all stakeholders to immediately adopt a credible local content policy, buttressed by an Industrial and trade policy that recognises the primacy of agriculture and mining in resuscitating the economy for the accomplishment of Vision 2030,” it said.

The organisation is at the epicentre of the promotion and facilitation of market access for local goods and services while concurrently increasing company shareholder returns, safeguarding employment, creating new employment opportunities, and harnessing consumer awareness for increased consumption of quality local goods and services, consequently improving government revenues

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