6 May 2013

Zambia: Chikwanda Signs SI to Monitor Balance of Payments

FINANCE Minister Alexander Chikwanda has signed a Statutory Instrument (SI) that brings into force the Bank of Zambia (Monitoring of Balance of Payments) Regulations 2013, whose objective is to monitor Balance of Payments in a transparent manner.

This is according to a statement released in Lusaka yesterday by the ministry's public relations officer Chileshe Kandeta.

"The Ministry of Finance takes this opportunity to affirm that in no way do the regulations stipulated in the SI32 of 2013 constitute any intentions, implied, disguised, concealed or otherwise by any other definition, to introduce exchange controls in Zambia," Mr Kandeta said.

He said instead of denigrating the regulations, the measures should be seen as a significant step towards creating high transparency standards in managing the Zambian financial system.

The regulations apply to financial service providers licensed under the Banking and Financial Services Act, and importers of goods or services exceeding US$10,000 or the equivalent in other foreign currency.

Others are exporters of goods or services exceeding $10,000 or equivalent in other foreign current and financial service providers designated under the National Payment Systems Act, 2007.

He said the BoZ would monitor the value of any imported goods, the value of any imported services including management services and loans granted to non-residents.

It will also monitor trade credits from non-residents and investments made in form of equity or investments made in form of debt securities outside Zambia by persons resident in Zambia.

Mr Kandeta said in relation to inflows, the BoZ would monitor, among others, the value of goods or services exported out of Zambia, profits or dividends received in respect of investments abroad, and borrowings from non-residents and trade credits to non-residents.

Others are investments in the form of equity from abroad, investments in the form of debt securities from abroad and receipts of both principal and interest on loans for non-residents.

In relation to international transactions, the BoZ would monitor the value of imported or exported manufacturing services or goods to or from non-residents, the net cost effect of telecommunications services, the value of international transport, courier and postal services and international money transfers into and out of Zambia.

"The people of Zambia have been complaining about lack of reliable and accurate information on the resources that are generated in the country or which come from foreign sources, to develop Zambia.

"This is an opportunity for affected players to ensure that accurate records on foreign exchange transactions are maintained and this is the way to go for a country endowed with resources," Mr Kandeta said.

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