The government will introduce import licences on selected goods as part of measures to contain the country’s widening trade imbalance and protect the struggling local industry, the industry minister has said.
Zimbabwe’s trade deficit is seen widening this year, with import bill is seen reaching $8.3 billion from $7.6 billion in 2013 compared to exports of $5 billion this year, against the $4.43 billion achieved last year, widening the trade deficit.
Industry and Trade minister Mike Bimha told The Source by phone that tightening rules around imports would also suffocate the influx of cheap imported goods.
“We cannot be importing what we have, and soon the ministry will be introducing import licences on those selected goods,” said Bimha.
Anyone wishing to import the selected good will be obliged to apply for the import licence from the ministry.
Bimha said from the period of dollarisation in 2009 most companies have been importing even locally available products which he said was not sustainable for the recovery of the industry whose capacity fell to a third by mid-year last year.