In the wake of foreign currency shortages especially for the companies that are importing raw materials, government is set to allow them to export part of their products to enable them to raise resources for raw materials.
Speaking after the tour of United Refineries Company that produces edible oils and detergents, the Minister of Finance and Economic Development Professor Mthuli Ncube said there is logic in allowing companies who are importing raw materials to have them export a portion of their products and be able to raise hard currency to bring in volumes of their raw material needs.
This follows a realisation that some companies spend a lot of time waiting for foreign currency allocations from the central bank to import materials such as soya beans.
The new approach may be a game changer in the production chain given that exports may stimulate production and allow companies to expand and diversify, said Minister Ncube.
“The need for companies such as this one to export some of their products is key to the sustainability of their operations because by exporting they win themselves from dependency on the central bank for currency,” he said.
The minister also took a swipe at the manner in which business is raising its prices saying government may have to intervene as the business community is behaving in an irresponsible manner by unnecessarily hiking prices yet the government has put in place measures to attend to their fuel cost which they say is the cause of price hikes.
“This issue of price hikes is uncalled for because we have put in place a fuel rebate system that helps them to deal with their fuel costs so for them to ignore the facility but go on to raise prices is unreasonable and we don’t want to be shambolic on them,” Minister Ncube said.
Government is keen to deal with challenges that are afflicting industry and continue on a growth trajectory for the growth and expansion of the economy.