on Friday, an official notification revealed that The government has renewed the revocation of duty on all vehicles that are imported by the different safari operators following it being scrapped over allegations of abuse.
In accordance with the Government Gazette which was released on Friday This new measure, became effective from 1st January. The section of legislation was first gazetted back in 2012 prior to being revoked temporarily over claims of abuse by a number of operators.
the statutory instrument in part read that The finance and Economic Development minister of in consultation with the Tourism and Hospitality sector minister shall consent to a revocation of tax with respect of the particular motor vehicles for distinctive use in safari business by the tour operators who are registered with the Tourism Authority as well as the Safari Operators Association of the Republic of Zimbabwe
A tour operator will, when effecting entrance on importation, or on moving from bond a motor vehicle within a suspension, submit to the appropriate bill of entry, an affirmation signed by her/him, to the effect that this described motor vehicle is to be exclusively used for the business of the safari operator.
This safari industry has Sixty five large operators with numerous tourists interested in the big 5 animals: elephants, lions, leopards, buffalos as well as rhinoceros. There are Two hundred and twenty registered mid-sized operators as well as more than 1000 small safari operators.
The large operators make up over 7 percent of the total revenues.
The industry revenue was about 20 % to $65 million last year driven by an increase in tourists. In 2012 the number of tourists was about 2 million however in 2013 it decreased to 1.8 million.