In­dus­try records 30% up in up­take of lo­cal prod­ucts

Chronicle (Zimbabwe) - - Business - Mid­lands Bu­reau Chief

DE­MAND for lo­cally man­u­fac­tured prod­ucts has risen by av­er­age 30 per­cent since the im­ple­men­ta­tion of Statu­tory In­stru­ment 64, plac­ing do­mes­tic com­pa­nies on solid foot­ing for growth, an of­fi­cial said.

e Gov­ern­ment en­acted S.I 64/2016 in June this year as part of mea­sures to con­trol ram­pant im­ports that had flooded the mar­ket and threat­en­ing the vi­a­bil­ity of lo­cal firms.

The new leg­is­la­tion re­moves sev­eral com­modi­ties, which are man­u­fac­tured lo­cally, from the open gen­eral im­port li­cence cat­e­gory.

The Gov­ern­ment has made it clear that the S.I 64 does not mean a “ban” on im­ported prod­ucts in Zim­babwe but rather that im­porters now need to ap­ply for an im­port per­mit be­fore bring­ing the prod­uct.

Among the af­fected prod­ucts are pro­cessed foods, build­ing ma­te­ri­als, fur­ni­ture and phar­ma­ceu­ti­cal prod­ucts.

Con­fed­er­a­tion of Zim­babwe In­dus­tries (CZI) pres­i­dent Mr Bu­sisa Moyo told the in­dus­try body’s Mid­lands Chap­ter that com­pa­nies have started ben­e­fit­ing from S.I.64.

“Af­ter the in­tro­duc­tion of S.I.64 com­pa­nies have reg­is­tered an in­crease in or­ders from the mar­ket of be­tween 30 to 50 per­cent for the prod­ucts re­stricted un­der the Statu­tory In­stru­ment,” he told the busi­ness gath­er­ing.

“Right now we are do­ing an im­pact as­sess­ment of the Statu­tory In­stru­ment but the in­di­ca­tions we have now show an im­prove­ment in or­ders.”

Mr Moyo said it was “very pos­si­ble” that, rid­ing on the leg­isla­tive sup­port by the Gov­ern­ment, the man­u­fac­tur­ing in­dus­try would reach the 65 per­cent ca­pac­ity util­i­sa­tion pro­jected this year.

“Be­cause of the S.I. we be­lieve as in­dus­try we can record an in­crease in ca­pac­ity util­i­sa­tion from 34 per­cent we recorded last year to 65 per­cent. Some in­dus­tries are al­ready above the 65 per­cent mark. So the S.I. has been a pos­i­tive de­vel­op­ment in gen­eral,” he said.

Mr Moyo said as a re­sult of the S.I. im­ports had also gone down by 14 per­cent. He said the new law would also have a pos­i­tive bear­ing on em­ploy­ment.

“The more the or­ders in­crease, the more the busi­ness for the man­u­fac­tur­ing in­dus­try and the more em­ploy­ment cre­ated,” he said.

Mr Moyo said there was a need to talk to em­ploy­ees on the ben­e­fits of this Gov­ern­ment ini­tia­tive as well as mem­bers of the pub­lic.

He said all in all there were now about 40 re­stricted goods un­der dif­fer­ent Statu­tory In­stru­ments since 2013.

“We have de­ter­gents, cook­ing oil, milk among other prod­ucts in the list of about 40 prod­ucts,” he said. — @pchi­tumba1

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