The government has extended the duty-free rebate on the motor vehicle scheme for civil servants beyond June 2021.
Through Statutory Instrument 52 of 2019, the Treasury had given civil servants with 10 years of service the nod to import cars duty-free.
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Under this provision, a vehicle to be imported should not exceed US$10 000 while a person is entitled to import one car within a period of five years.
The extension of the scheme was revealed in a letter dated 16 August 2021 by the Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Public Service, Labour and Social Welfare Simon Masanga and addressed to the Zimbabwe Confederation of Public Sector Trade Union (ZCPSTU) president, Cecilia Alexander. Wrote Masanga:
Reference is made to your letter dated 15 June 2021 wherein you requested for the duty-free import scheme on the motor vehicle to continue.
Please be advised that the scheme is still operational and applications are being processed for qualifying members.
Masanga confirmed the development in an interview with Chronicle on Monday. He said:
It’s very true that the Government has continued the rebate on motor vehicle scheme for civil servants. That is one of the non-monetary benefits for civil servants.
Civil servants requested that it be continued. The Public Service Commission and the Treasury agreed to continue with the programme until further notice.
On 15 June 2021, ZCPSTU wrote to the government expressing concern over the 2020-2021 budget pronouncements to terminate the civil service rebate on the motor vehicle scheme with effect from 30 June 2021.
The civil servants had appealed for the suspension of the termination of the rebate on the motor vehicle scheme on account that the scheme coincided with COVID-19 lockdown measures, saying only one per cent of civil servants have benefited from the scheme.