Minister of Finance and Economic Development Patrick Chinamasa has revealed that the government is planning to restrict the number of cars imported into the country in order to protect the local motor industry. Chinamasa revealed that the government may hike the price of duty for vehicle models similar to those that are locally assembled or include the vehicles on a list of banned products like what happened with Statutory Instrument 64 of 2016.
Speaking to the Financial Gazette, Chinamasa said:
Clearly, the intention is essentialy that we will give protection to locally assembled vehicles, which means hiking tariffs or putting the sector under a measure similar to SI 64 to protect locally assembled motor vehicles. There will be no total ban as such.
And that exercise is not done by the Ministry of Finance, but the Ministry of Industry and Commerce. They know the capacity at different manufacturing companies or assembling companies; they are in direct touch with the assemblers, not Ministry of Finance.
We have had discussions with them and we have indicated to them that we want to restrict the importation of vehicle they assemble. But the major concern is that of pricing of the vehicles.
We still need to iron out issues related to costing of the vehicles
Currently, there are three vehicle assembling firms in the country — Quest Motor Corporation, the State-owned Willowvale Motors Industries (WMI) and AVM Africa.
More: Financial Gazette