Zimbabwe: Mutare Traders Report 'Brisk Business' As Police Say Smuggling Up

GOVERNMENT ban on the importation of some foreign products into the country seems to be failing as cases of smuggling continue to surge along the Zimbabwe-Mozambique border with traders in Mutare reporting "brisk business".

Local traders continue to defy government directive to buy local products as they opt to smuggle cheaper and affordable goods from Mozambique.

Government recently enacted Statutory Instrument 64 of 2016 prohibiting the importation of goods such as groceries from entering the country. Only those granted a special import licence can bring in certain goods, according to the new law. Announcing the law, the minister of industry, Mike Bimha, said the move was meant to protect local industries against unfair competition from cheap imports. But many people thought the law was unfair as it forced them to abandon their businesses and buy from local shops owned by senior government officials.