‣ The Trade Information Desk at selected border posts is a useful tool for women traders

Business opportunities for cross border traders

‣ Zimbabwe’s consumer goods like processed cereals, fermented drinks and curios are some of the main export products. 

‣ Clothes, solar panels and gas cooking products are some of the products imported into Zimbabwe

Export quality and standards

The Standards Association of Zimbabwe certifies the quality of non-medical goods produced or imported into the country.

The Quality Control Department carries out product certification at:

17 Coventry Road
Workington, Harare
Tel: +263 24 2753 800-2

Contact information

Standards Association of Zimbabwe
Northend Close, Northridge Park, Borrowdale, Harare.
Tel: +263 242 882017/8/9, 242882021, 242885511/2
Fax: +263 242 882020
Web: http://www.saz.org.zw

One of the mandates of  the Zimbabwe Revenue Authority (Zimra) is to facilitate trade and travel. This is achieved by ensuring smooth movement of goods and people through inland and border ports of entry/exit. Currently Zimbabwean cross border traders do not need a Visa to enter the Democratic Republic of Congo.  For consignments of USD 1000 and below no duty is payable.

COMESA Simplified Trade Regime

COMESA has come up with a simplified Customs clearance procedure for its Member States that can be used by small scale cross border traders to facilitate easy import and export of their goods. The simplified clearance procedure is called the COMESA Simplified Trade Regime (STR).
angle-left Everything you need to know about the STR

Who can use the STR?

It is used by small scale cross border traders importing or exporting goods from one COMESA Member State to the other. Travelers who do not have goods for sale should not use the Simplified Trade Regime.

When can it be used?

Where a small scale cross border trader is exporting goods valued at US$1000.00 or less per consignment he or she can use the STR. The goods should be listed on the COMESA STR Common List and should be for resale or use in their business.

How is it used?

For goods that have been grown or wholly produced in the COMESA region and appear on the Common List, the trader will complete a simplified Customs document (declaration form) and a simplified COMESA Certificate of Origin. These documents are filled in at the border post by the trader and are stamped and certified by a Customs official. Goods imported and exported should comply with the normal food safety, plant and animal health regulations including environmental protection. Import or Export permits needed to import or export certain agricultural foods and animal products are still required.

Why is it necessary to implement the STR?

The COMESA Simplified Trade Regime was introduced to solve the problems faced by small scale cross border traders such as:

  1. Lack of knowledge and information on the benefits of trading with other COMESA countries
  2. Complex documents and complicated processes of filling the current forms
  3. Increased clearance costs
  4. Delays in the clearing of goods and processing of tax refunds

The STR intends to overcome the above challenges by simplifying the whole process of clearing goods for small scale cross border traders by way of introducing:

  1. A simplified certificate of origin which should be signed and stamped by a Zimra official at the border post for all goods that appear on the Common List.
  2. A simplified customs document – traders are supposed to declare goods that appear on the Common List and duty is not payable on the declared goods.
  3. A common list of qualifying goods - the Common List will be gazetted by each Member State and notified to the general public. Once gazetted, the Common List will also be displayed at all border posts within COMESA.