Zimbabwe Revenue Authority‘s (ZIMRA) Commissioner General Faith Mazani has revealed plans to de-congest the Beitbridge Border Post which witnesses kilometres of vehicle queues waiting to be cleared to cross the Limpopo river.
Mazani, who spoke during the Zimbabwe Investment Conference in Harare today said that ZIMRA was working on a project to seal trucks in Rutenga in order to to make way for easy clearance at the busiest border post in Southern Africa.
“We need to engage with other Ministries and stakeholders involved for this project such as the Ministry of Transport for the railway,” the Commissioner said.
Railway might be used to transport trucks across the border posts from Rutenga to reduce the number of vehicles on the border post if the Rutenga project is to work.
Besides using the Rutenga for de-congestion, the government has chipped in to provide funds for the upgrade of the Beitbridge border post.
The upgrade is being done to reduce delays that travellers encounter on their trips across the Limpopo river.
“We have released US $9,3 million. It is for the immediate upgrading as a stop-gap measure. We have gone round the border post to see the areas we to attend to now,” said Finance and Economic Development secretary, Willard Manungo in the Newsday.
The Beitbridge Border post, infamous for the congestion that often results in traffic lining up for as far as six kilometres has attributed such failings to Infrastructure.
The Commissioner General also revealed that the tax collecting structure is in the process of introducing a single window system to combine all stakeholders on the border posts together. The single window is whereby Ministries use one form of infrastructure for services rather than each ministry having its own infrastructure. The Beitbridge Border has limited space for all the ministries to build infrastructures for Marketing.
The Commissioner said that the current situation where almost each stakeholder at the border posts has to invest in its own infrastructure is retrogressive according to the ZIMRA website.
“We are going to work on the proliferation of our stakeholders based at the border post, we have the agricultural stakeholders, the army, the police, health sector and the environmental agency (EMA),” Mazani said.
“There are so many of us at the border post and as a result the facilities that we provide are limited.”
ZIMRA says it has been putting strategies in place to ensure that the paying of taxes and clearances at border posts are faster and easier.
The revenue collector started implementing reforms after the 200 days ease of doing business initiative that was conducted last year.