This article seeks to correct some misconceptions on duty for building material imported for personal use by private individuals. One of the incorrect views is that production of an approved house plan exempts one from paying duty .
It should be noted that the traveller’s rebate is granted to a traveller once in a calendar month and on first entry. It is granted on those goods for personal use, and not for commercial or trade purposes that have been properly declared by the traveller. If the value of the goods is less than US$200, no duty will be paid. If the value of the goods exceeds US$200, duty will be paid on the excess amount using flat rates unless specific tariffs are requested prior to the calculation of duty.
In the determination of goods for personal use or for commercial purposes, Zimra considers the quantities of the goods being imported. Building material and construction finishing material such as roof tiles, floor tiles, plumbing accessories, bathroom and toilet accessories and paint, among others, are usually imported in large quantities which may deem them to be for commercial purposes and result in the travellers’ rebate being denied when the goods are actually for personal use by the traveller. In order for the traveller to enjoy this rebate, the Commissioner General of Zimra has set out the condition that the traveller s/he shall be required to present copy of an approved house plan as evidence that the goods are not intended for resale.
Please note that the house plan itself does not exempt one from paying any duty that may be due. Any duty due on building material shall be charged at a flat rate of 40 percent, or at the appropriate tariff rates when so requested before calculation of duty. Importers are hereby advised to take note that the following building material require an import licence:
- Tile adhesive
- Window frames
- Door frames
- Steel roofing sheets
The import licence is obtained from the Ministry of Industry and Commerce prior to their importation and should be submitted at the time of clearance of the goods at the port of entry.
This article was compiled by the Zimbabwe Revenue Authority for information purposes only. Zimra shall not accept responsibility for loss or damage arising from use of material in this article and no liability will attach to the Zimbabwe Revenue Authority.