By Tichaona Kurewa
THE Zimbabwe National Chamber of Commerce (ZNCC) says the 2023 National Budget must consolidate economic gains accrued in the past year, including fiscal stability.
The ZNCC also believes the budget must further propel the country towards an upper-middle-income society by 2030.
“The 2023 budget must consolidate what we have achieved in terms of stability. For the better part of the last two years, Zimbabwe has been running on a surplus in terms of the budget and that must be sustained. There is also a need for tax reprieve such as the intermediary money transfer tax as they are too harsh for business in the country.
“The government must also put robust measures to curb smuggling as it is negatively impacting on competitiveness and revenue collection,” said Christopher Mugaga, Zimbabwe National Chamber of Commerce, Chief Executive Officer.
The budget is also expected to promote the interests of local business people.
“The 2023 National Budget must further protect and promote indigenous people so that they can even compete with foreigners doing business in Zimbabwe. Government must also review downwards the foreign currency retention ratio so that the indigenous people can expand their businesses,” said Ozias Marange, former Zimbabwe National Chamber of Commerce, Vice president.
In the past year, the government instituted various measures, including the foreign currency auction system, payment of government contractors in hard currency and tight monitoring of mobile money transfers which were fueling inflation.
These measures and the introduction of gold coins as a store of value saw the convergence of the parallel market and official exchange rate resulting in price stability.