Gweru Company On The Verge Of Collapse Due To Sanctions - Report2 years ago
A Gweru based company Fuest Industrial Supplies (FIS) is reportedly on the verge of collapsing due to sanctions imposed on Zimbabwean entities by Western powers, the Chronicle reports.
According to the publication, the US Office of Foreign Asset Control (OFAC) blocked a payment of US$33 414 to FIS from a South African company, Alloy Trading Africa after OFAC suspected that the funds belonged to Minerals Marketing Corporation of Zimbabwe (MMCZ) which is under sanctions.
The funds according to the FIS managing director, Marvelous Tapfuma were for 11,3 tonnes of steel billets that were imported to the Alloy Trading Africa by FIS riding on MMCZ and the seizure has crippled FIS operations.
Tapfuma spoke to the publication and said:
..FIS was forced, like many businesses in Zimbabwe in the export of minerals and steel products, to go through MMCZ when exporting as it had a contract to supply in South Africa
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When we got to South Africa to receive our payment, it was MMCZ that was flagged because it is the one that processed the papers here in Zimbabwe and the funds were then blocked by OFAC
By blocking our funds citing MMCZ, which is on sanctions is like putting all Zimbabweans on sanctions as all of us have to go through MMCZ.
When we wrote to them, we attached the MMCZ Act to show that all Zimbabwean companies can only export through the MMCZ.
By insisting that the money belonged to MMCZ, it means MMCZ is being used as a proxy to punish all Zimbabweans because no one can export without going through the MMCZ
Our means of economic survival was completely destroyed by these heinous sanctions to an extent that we are walloping in abject poverty.
All our business operations have been destroyed because the money we used to start the business was borrowed funds and we have faced lawsuits after the block by OFAC. We suffered many losses, and all our business operations have stopped.
FIS says it has appealed for the past 7 years to the EU and the USA but the funds cannot be released. The government of Zimbabwe has constantly said sanctions imposed on Zimbabwe affect the general population and they are affecting many Zimbabweans while the US and the EU are saying the government should not blame sanctions but corruption and many other internal ills bedeviling the country for the economic mess Zimbabwe is in.