Gvt clarifies delays on issuance of  Import Permits

Staff Reporter

Government has clarified on the delays in processing import permits for components that have to be sourced outside the country, Harare Post can report.

A contact within the Ministry of Industry and Commerce revealed that corrupt officials were causing delays in the issuing out of import permits for essential components that are sourced abroad for refurbishment and overhaul of machinery. He stated that these corrupt officers were taking their time when inspecting all the applications for import permits, with a view to elicit bribes.

The clarification follows complaints by industry players who were arguing that the delays in the acquisition of import permits resulted in unnecessary delays in recommencement of operations after a breakdown as planned overhaul works often failed to proceed.

The contact said the import permits for components in this category include, V-belts, fern belts and seal kits.

According to the contact, the only manufacturer of conveyor belts in Zimbabwe, General Beltings, had a number of these components removed from Open General Import licence (OGIL) and is seeking to be protected by SI 122.

He revealed some of the companies that are being affected by the delay in repair and maintenance after machinery breakdown. These companies include Schweppes Zimbabwe, MEGA Pack, and Dendairy among others.

Economic analysts commented that the corrupt officials causing delays in the acquisition of import permits in the Ministry of Industry and Commerce should be investigated.

President Emmerson Mnangagwa promised zero tolerance to corruption, when he assumed office in 2018.

Earlier this year, the Minister of Transport and Infrastructural Development Felix Mhona visited the Central Vehicle Registry (CVR) where corrupt officials were also causing artificial delays in the acquisition of number plates.