President Emmerson Mnangagwa who has stood behind his Finance Minister Mthuli Ncube despite criticism from all sectors including from his own party, today made a major breakthrough when industry rallied behind his new tax measures.
The Confederation of Zimbabwe Industries, which represents the country’s manufacturing sector, today came out in support of the two percent tax which it had initially rejected.
“We recognise that this tax was aimed at widening the tax base and is vital for arresting the fiscal deficit which must be dealt with immediately,” CZI president Sifelani Jabangwe said.
According to the Herald Jabangwe went on: “The 2 percent tax as subsequently modified by the Minister of Finance on 5th of October, with of course further adjustment in consultation with the private sector, should go a long way in closing the fiscal deficit and restoring stability to the economy…
“We therefore recognise the necessity of the tax as a short term therapy measure for the economy. The alternative is to have incomes further eroded by runaway inflation and increased shortages and general decline in wellbeing.
“We therefore call on stakeholders to accept this painful necessity to stabilise the economy, we also call on Government to play its full part in stabilising the economy and sharing the associated pain by implementing the measures as outlined in the TSP and returning to zero deficit position as soon as possible.”
Jabangwe said his organisation hoped that the tax would apply only until December next year.
Sources say Mnangagwa needs just 12 months to get the economy back on track but too many people, some with political agendas, have been throwing spanners into the works.
Mnangagwa has said Zimbabweans have to brace up for “painful but necessary” reforms to transform the country’s economy.
He and Ncube plan to spur economy growth of up to 9.7 percent by 2023.
Ncube’s Transitional Stabilisation Programme is only for two years up to the end of 2020.