THE full implementation of Zimbabwe’s Consignment Based Conformity Assessment (CBCA) programme through French company Bureau Veritas commences on 1st March 2016, Industry and Commerce Minister Mike Bimha has said.
Officially opening the CBCA awareness conference, Bimha said ZIMRA in partnership with ministry officials, Standards Association of Zimbabwe and Bureau Veritas are refining the enforcement modalities that will ensure that non-conforming consignment will be denied entry into the country at all ports of entry.
“In this regard as from 1st of March 2016, only fully compliant certificates of conformity will be required for the clearance of goods that depart the country of export on or after 1st March 2016,” he said.
Bimha said importers who will bring any consignments of products listed for inspection not accompanied with conformity certificate would be required to take corrective action which include taking the consignment back to the exporting country at his or her expense.
The CBCA programme has been on a seven month transitional implementation phase from the period July 2015 to February this year.
According to Bimha, the programme is progressing steadily in ensuring that all listed imported products meet quality, safety, health and environmental standards.
Bimha says substandard imported goods erodes competitiveness of local industry and impacts negatively profitability of companies.
“To the industry quality products result in cost savings as quality standards help to optimise operations. Customer satisfaction is enhanced thus sales will be increased,” he said.
The CBCA programme entails the verification of conformity in the country of export prior to shipment of the consignment.
Bureau Veritas Zimbabwe’s Contracts Officer Tendai Malunga said from the transitional period, a significant percentage of exporters and importers are now aware of the programme.
He said similar awareness campaigns having been conducted in countries such as South Africa, China, Zambia and the UAE, the company will also hold another campaign in the UK.
Four more second awareness campaigns will also be held locally in Bulawayo, Beitbridge, Mutare and Kariba.
BV South Africa VOC Manager Reginald Andrew said imports with value of less than $1 000 will be exempted from the certification programme.
Others that will be exempted include donations, imports of diplomatic goods as well as individual goods worth less than the minimum threshold.
BV’s minimum charge for inspection is $250 while the maximum is $2675 in all categories. The threshold for smallholder players is at $1000. Under the CBCA arrangement, the Government will receive a five percent royalty on fees charged on all importers.
The Group has about 66 000 employees in 140 countries. FinX