ZNCC notes the operationalisation of THE 2024 National Budget proposals through SI 248 and 249 of 2023 as well as the Finance (No.2) Act 13 of 2023, some of the measures which have since been reversed by the government pending further deliberations. In particular, we would like to highlight the measures to protect value chain integrity and transparency, and to counter unfair competition by informal traders.
Under the new regulations, only registered wholesalers who are VAT compliant were now eligible to purchase from manufacturers; and only registered and VAT compliant retailers were allowed to purchase from wholesalers for purchases above US$1,000. Additionally, a 15% VAT had been effected on certain basic commodities. ZNCC commends authorities for reconsidering these measures and engaging in further consultations with stakeholders to chart a way forward.
The Chamber supports the government’s efforts to mobilise domestic resources and the expansion of the tax base by including the informal sector. While we agree with Section 298(1bi) of the Constitution which states that “the burden of taxation must be shared fairly,” it is also our strong view that these efforts should be reconciled with Section 13(1c) of the Constitution which requires the State to “foster the development of industrial and commercial enterprises to empower Zimbabwean citizens.”
The Chamber believes that embracing markets will foster sustained macroeconomic stability.
One of ZNCC’s 2023 Congress Resolutions was the need for stakeholders to facilitate a market-led economic recovery and growth to establish an effective market economy that supports the attainment of a middle-income economy by 2030. ZNCC believes that the proposed measures were going against the dictates of market forces and we are currently engaging the relevant ministries to come up with a way forward that addresses the entire value chains in the economy. ZNCC remains committed to its members on its continued commitment to promoting market forces, as opposed to administrative interventions which result in unintended consequences.