News:Government defends import controls on basic commodities

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Finance Minister, Patrick Chinamasa yesterday defended the Government's decision to control the importation of specified goods that are locally produced, during a Questions without Notice session. Chinamasa argued that the decision was meant to reduce the externalisation of the US dollar and to protect the local industry.

When asked if the statutory instrument was a ban, Chinamasa responded,

"The statutory instrument does not ban the importation of commodities. It merely removes those items from the Open General Import Licence. For you to import those goods, you need to apply for a licence."

Chinamasa also urged parliamentarians to support the government policy,

"A lot of those items, which have been removed from the Open General Import Licence are locally produced. The goods locally produced are of higher quality and it will be good for this House to support our local industry, our local manufacturers and local economy. Please support the Buy Zimbabwe campaign.

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