Harare - The Zimbabwean government has directed that from April 1 2016 all line ministries should issue orders to the licensing authority to cancel the licences of non-compliant businesses to ensure adherence to the Indigenisation and Economic Empowerment Act.
According to leading online news agency Financial Express, the Zimbabwean government has given foreign-owned businesses up to March 31 to submit their indigenisation compliance plans.
Youth, Indigenisation and Economic Empowerment Minister Patrick Zhuwao told journalists on Wednesday that Cabinet had resolved to withdraw the proposed indigenisation levy and would instead cancel all licences of non-compliant companies.
"Cabinet has directed that on April 1, 2016, all line Ministers invoke Section 5 of the Indigenisation and Economic Empowerment Act against all non-compliant businesses in their sectors."
He said invoking the act was purely a technical process which would come into effect by "pure operation of the law".
Under the process, the minister of the sector in question would issue an order to a licensing authority to cancel licences of non-compliant businesses, notifying these firms in writing of the intention to cancel the licence.
Each company is allowed to give reasons why the licence should not be cancelled. The minister will then direct the non-compliant businesses to toe the line.
If this does not happen, the minister will notify third parties likely to be affected by cancellation of the licence. The licensing authority will, without notice, cancel the licence if a business remains non-compliant after a grace period of 30 days.
Zhuwao said three months into 2016, businesses have continued to disregard the laws "as if daring President Mugabe and his government to do something about their contemptuous behaviour".
Said Zhuwao: "The failure to adhere to the laws of the land must attract immediate consequences that must be severe and dire enough to ensure that the law is respected and adhered to."
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