Zimbabwean Transport Minister Nicholas Goche says the government has indefinitely lifted a ban on the importation of used cars until such a time when the economy would have recovered.
Goche told a parliamentary committee on transport and infrastructure development that vehicles older than five years can now be brought into the country. The ban had been imposed in 2010 to help revive the local car industry.
The minister also told the committee that the government will monitor vehicles being imported from Japan, fearing radioactive contamination following last year’s tsunami that destroyed the Fukushima Nuclear Plant in that country.
Goche said the government has begun working on monitoring mechanisms to ensure Japanese vehicles imported into Zimbabwe are safe.
Reports say vehicles coming Fukushima have been contaminated.
“The fear of radiation is there," said Goche. "There is a Zimbabwean who lives in Japan who wrote to us and the Ministry of Industry and Commerce that before the vehicles are imported from Japan, there be a mechanism to check on that.”
Transport committee chairman Blessing Chebundo told VOA Studio 7 reporter Jonga Kandemiiri that the used car ban was never effected though the government had announced and gazetted it.
He adds that Goche's statement helps to remove the confusion surrounding the used car policy in the country.