$4.5m externalised

$4.5m externalised
Published: 06 December 2017 (286 Views)
ABOUT $4.5 million is externalised monthly by informal cross-border traders through imports of various goods that are being resold locally, a survey report has shown.

Given low industrial activity in the formal sector and high unemployment in the economy, thousands of people have found solace in informal trading, where they are forced to play hide and seek with authorities in a bid to eke a living.

Despite the liquidity challenges facing the economy, a report that was presented during the Southern Africa Informal Cross Border Traders' (ICBTs) Conference held in Bulawayo yesterday, indicates the country is losing much foreign exchange through externalisation by different players.

Due to the informal nature of cross border trading, participants drawn from neighbouring Sadc states who attended the indaba said governments were losing substantial potential revenue as a result of failure to harness opportunities in that sector.

They said urgent steps must be taken by authorities to create a supporting institutional and legal framework to protect and promote growth of the informal sector.

"Our research has shown that about $4.5m is spent out of the country monthly through cross border imports. Cross-border traders are involved in externalising funds to procure goods for resale and the same goods impact on the operations of local industries," said Tatenda Mungumbate, a representative from The Space, an organisation that works closely with cross border traders.

Cross-border traders decried neglect by governments across Sadc, whom they blamed for failure to create jobs, coupled with consequences of neoliberal policies of international finance institutions.

National University of Science and Technology (Nust) researcher, Gracious Mavisa, said informal cross-border trading was on the rise as citizens seek to cushion themselves against economic shocks.

She, however, said informal trade was cumbersome due to rigid regulations and clearance delays, which force many to resort to illegal options. Smuggling and illicit deals are rife in the sector as a result of a support structure from regulatory bodies and governments, participants said.

"There is a need for African governments and policy makers to co-ordinate their strategies to in order to support the needs and increase the understanding of the informal sector," according to the Open Society Initiative for Southern Africa.

Speaking at the same occasion, Ecumenical Service for Socio-Economic Transformation (ESSET) representative Ms Dawu Sibanda said there was a lack of will by Government towards the informal cross border traders.

"There is a lack of Government will to implement support policies for informal cross border traders. There is a need for policies that are attractive to us so that we can have the capacity to grow," said Ms Dawu.

Parliamentary Portfolio Committee on Defence, Home Affairs and Security Services chairperson who is also MP for Buhera Central, Mr Ronald Muderedzwa, stressed the need to revise laws to improve lives of the informal cross border traders saying existing legislation was archaic and did not favour the growth of the sector.

Meanwhile, Bulawayo Vendors and Traders' Association (BVTA) executive director Mr Michael Ndebele said the purpose of the conference was to find a regional voice to fight the challenges that affect the informal cross border traders especially women.

During the meeting it emerged that female cross border traders were exposed to sexual harassment at border posts and xenophobic attacks in some Sadc countries. The meeting continues today.

- chronicle


You May Like These Videos


There are no comments.

Latest stories

Zimbabwe teachers demand salaries in US$

by newzimbabwe | 20 October 2018 | 53 Views

'Chamisa's Alliance plotted a coup against Mnangagwa'

by Staff reporter | 20 October 2018 | 62 Views

Demand for Indian sex sweets rises

by Staff reporter | 20 October 2018 | 54 Views

'Chamisa won't be contested at congress' - no vacancy in MDC presidium

by Staff reporter | 20 October 2018 | 52 Views

Mthuli Ncube calls for political reforms

by Staff reporter | 20 October 2018 | 55 Views

Mnangagwa's minister exposed charging in USD refuses Bond notes

by Staff reporter | 20 October 2018 | 45 Views

Zimsec engages Deloitte And Touch over exam leaks

by Staff reporter | 20 October 2018 | 39 Views

The White Man who sent fear down Mugabe's spine

by Globe and Mail | 20 October 2018 | 40 Views

Human rights violations down in Zimbabwe

by Stephen Jakes | 20 October 2018 | 27 Views

Mliswa pleads with Finance minister to see importance of MPs vehicles

by Stephen Jakes | 20 October 2018 | 21 Views

Electric Tesla car causes stir on Zimbabwe social media

by Staff Reporter | 20 October 2018 | 35 Views

Zimbabwe army officers warned

by Staff reporter | 20 October 2018 | 41 Views

Biti savages Mthuli Ncube

by Staff reporter | 20 October 2018 | 34 Views

Zanu-PF backers justify army use of deadly force

by Staff reporter | 20 October 2018 | 32 Views

Zimbabwe tax system hit by low compliance levels

by Staff reporter | 20 October 2018 | 28 Views

Price controls, tinkering with the deck while the titanic is sinking

by Jacob Mafume, MDC National Spokesperson | 19 October 2018 | 198 Views

Man nearly killed over cooking oil

by Simbarashe Sithole | 19 October 2018 | 184 Views

Mnangagwa closing in on unscrupulous businesspeople

by Staff reporter | 19 October 2018 | 199 Views

Prophet sells congregant's vehicle

by Staff reporter | 19 October 2018 | 166 Views

Zanu-PF's Dexter Nduna confirmed Chegutu West MP

by Staff reporter | 19 October 2018 | 117 Views

Mnangagwa caps 1719 graduands

by Staff reporter | 19 October 2018 | 89 Views

ZCTU calls for resignation of Minister Gumbo

by Stephen Jakes | 19 October 2018 | 242 Views

Mnangagwa has to deliver and, urgently too

by Staff reporter | 19 October 2018 | 252 Views

Zanu-PF dictatorship, ideological dominance

by Vivid Gwede | 19 October 2018 | 169 Views

ZCTU, why spare Bulawayo council over rates hike

by Conway Tutani | 19 October 2018 | 156 Views

Motlanthe Commission risks playing into Zanu-PF agenda

by Staff reporter | 19 October 2018 | 208 Views

Councils challenged to generate own income

by Staff reporter | 19 October 2018 | 136 Views

Zimbabwe gender parity misses 50% mark, says Mohadi

by Staff reporter | 19 October 2018 | 99 Views

Zanu-PF official, sangoma jailed over pangolin scales

by Staff reporter | 19 October 2018 | 160 Views

Mliswa mocks Gender Commission

by Staff reporter | 19 October 2018 | 146 Views

Police harass senior Masvingo journalist

by Stephen Jakes | 19 October 2018 | 129 Views

Zimbabwe gold exports decline by 21%

by Staff reporter | 19 October 2018 | 149 Views

Zimbabwe drops in World Economic Forum rankings

by Staff reporter | 19 October 2018 | 162 Views

Village Inn exonerates Supa Mandiwanzira

by Staff reporter | 19 October 2018 | 123 Views

Zimbabwe army killings probe hots up

by Staff reporter | 19 October 2018 | 148 Views

Mthuli Ncube's 2% tax sparks confusion

by Staff reporter | 19 October 2018 | 125 Views