Locals to benefit from new Export Processing Zone requirements
Companies that will be producing under the new regulations of the Export Processing Zone (EPZ) will be required to sell 20 percent of their products on the domestic market.
The government—through the Ministry of Industry, Trade and Tourism is reviewing the EPZ Act in order to increase the number of companies exporting under the scheme.
The ministry’s publicist, Wiskes Nkombezi, said EPZ regulations were reviewed in 2015 but are yet to be gazetted.
He said the review of the regulations covered the percentage of products which can be exported or sold on the domestic market.
“The new regulations allow EPZ companies to sell utmost 20 percent of their products on the domestic market but these will be subjected to appropriate taxes. Which means customers, who have been complaining of not being able to access these export quality products, will be able to consume them,” he said.
Nkombezi said, the ministry is still using the old regulations, but it should be noted that the Act targets non-traditional exports.
“We expect improved product diversification and improved generation of foreign exchange when the new regulations come into effect. Penalties and fees were also reviewed in the new regulations,” Nkombezi said.
The EPZ Act was first reviewed and approved by Parliament in 2013. Some of the reviewed sections include the percentage of products that can be sold locally and be subject to requisite taxes or exported and enjoy tax exemptions.
The review also aligned the Act with formal names of implementing institutions.