Sec­ond-hand ve­hi­cles to be screened

Chronicle (Zimbabwe) - - Front Page - Leonard Ncube

GOV­ERN­MENT is work­ing on a pol­icy to screen all sec­ond hand ve­hi­cles to make sure they meet min­i­mum stan­dards be­fore they can be im­ported into the coun­try, a Cab­i­net Min­is­ter said yes­ter­day.

Of­fi­cially open­ing the Mo­tor In­dus­try As­so­ci­a­tion of Zim­babwe (MIAZ) an­nual congress here on Wed­nes­day the Min­is­ter of In­dus­try and Com­merce, Nqo­bizitha Man­gal­iso Ndlovu said the mo­tor in­dus­try was key to the coun­try’s eco­nomic turn­around hence the need to create an ex­port ori­ented sec­tor. He said the pro­posed pol­icy will be in place early next year as part of ef­forts to re­vive in­dus­try.

“In terms of stan­dards we need pre-in­spec­tion of pre-owned ve­hi­cles. We’re se­ri­ously con­sid­er­ing in­tro­duc­tion of in­spec­tion in the first quar­ter of 2019 to see if they meet min­i­mum lo­cal stan­dards,” said Min­is­ter Ndlovu.

He said Gov­ern­ment will also scale up ef­forts to re­sus­ci­tate crit­i­cal in­dus­tries such as Zis­cos­teel, Na­tional Rail­ways of Zim­babwe, Hwange Col­liery Com­pany, Zesa and Dun­lop in the first quar­ter of 2019 as these are key to the na­tion.

“Gov­ern­ment also tar­gets to help re­vive dis­tressed in­dus­tries in­clud­ing the pri­vate sec­tor. Re­vival of Zis­cos­teel is cen­tral to in­dus­try and if we don’t get it right we can’t take in­dus­try es­pe­cially in Bu­l­awayo back on its feet,” said Min­is­ter Ndlovu.

“Gov­ern­ment is on the right course to re­viv­ing crit­i­cal in­dus­try. The mo­tor in­dus­try and Gov­ern­ment, work­ing to­gether, can turn around the econ­omy of this coun­try hence we hope to create an ex­port-ori­ented in­dus­try as we move away from be­ing a land locked to a land linked coun­try,” he said.

Min­is­ter Ndlovu called for link­ages with other coun­tries like South Africa in the mo­tor in­dus­try to ca­pac­i­tate lo­cal in­dus­try. He, how­ever, warned in­dus­try play­ers against in­creas­ing prices say­ing Gov­ern­ment will not just watch while con­sumers are be­ing ex­ploited. The min­is­ter said that for­eign cur­rency cus­toms duty im­posed by Min­is­ter of Fi­nance and Eco­nomic De­vel­op­ment, Pro­fes­sor Mthuli Ncube, on im­por­ta­tion of mo­tor ve­hi­cles was meant to con­trol im­por­ta­tion of non­pro­duc­tive goods par­tic­u­larly cars and sav­ing the scarce for­eign cur­rency. He im­plored the mo­tor in­dus­try to come up with a work­ing tech­ni­cal com­mit­tee that will work with Gov­ern­ment to come up with an ac­tion plan for the in­dus­try.

MIAZ pres­i­dent, Mr Sim­pli­sio Shamba, be­moaned the state of the in­dus­try, which he said was op­er­at­ing in si­los.

“We agree with the min­is­ter about the need for a tech­ni­cal com­mit­tee, which will ar­tic­u­late is­sues of the in­dus­try. At the mo­ment the mo­tor in­dus­try is more of each man for him­self-as there is no proper reg­u­la­tion, which is why we de­vel­oped the mo­tor in­dus­try de­vel­op­ment pol­icy to gov­ern op­er­a­tors and guard against brief­case busi­ness and smug­glers who dis­tort prices,” said Mr Shamba.

He urged play­ers in the in­dus­try to be dy­namic adding that in­tro­duc­tion of pay­ment of duty in for­eign cur­rency will help screen sec­ond hand ve­hi­cles and pro­mote lo­cal as­sem­blers.

“The onus is now on lo­cal man­u­fac­tur­ers to be able to choose mod­els that are needed by min­istries. We don’t want to waste for­eign cur­rency by bring­ing in mod­els that will come and work for a few months and be parked. We need this for­eign cur­rency to re­vive crit­i­cal in­dus­try,” said Mr Shamba.

The Min­is­ter of State for Mata­bele­land North Pro­vin­cial Af­fairs, Richard Moyo, chal­lenged the mo­tor in­dus­try to ex­plore other av­enues for sur­vival.

“As or­gan­i­sa­tions in the mo­tor in­dus­try I urge you to be dy­namic to re­act to mar­ket con­di­tions. The in­dus­try has to take ad­van­tage of avail­able ex­ports and cham­pion our na­tional in­ter­ests hence I also in­vite you to ex­plore busi­ness op­por­tu­ni­ties in my prov­ince,” he said. — @ ncubeleon.

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