By Alfonce Mbizwo
Zimbabwe’s revenue authority (Zimra) will this year introduce vehicle registration at ports of entry, but says it needs to upgrade its technology to enable use of plastic money.
In his keynote at the International Customs day commemorations held under the theme “Innovation for customs progress, Commissioner-general Gershem Pasi said the move is meant to ensure the de-congestion of Zimra’s inland offices and bring a ‘one shop’ clearance for imported motor vehicles. Such a development would enable the public to leave the border posts with number plates.
But Pasi noted that Zimra needed to look into the use of plastic money at border posts and airports, as moving around with huge amounts of cash inconveniences travellers and puts them at risk.
“What needs to be tapped into is the use of plastic money at border posts and airports so that travellers avoid moving with huge amounts of cash, which on its own is a risk.
Pasi however said this would only be achieved if the border infrastructure is rehabilitated particularly at the Beitbridge Border Post.
“If infrastructural challenges at the border post are addressed, our strategies as ZIMRA to facilitate smooth trade and travel will bear more fruit,” he said.
According to the African Development Bank (AfDB), government loses between USD30 million and USD35 million annually in waiting time and transaction costs as congestion and cumbersome customs procedures take their toll on trade.%