HARARE – The Radiation Protection Authority of Zimbabwe (RPAZ) has demanded that, with immediate effect, all cars being imported from countries such as Japan be inspected for radiation contamination.
In a notice, the chief executive officer of RPAZ Justice Chipuru said the move was meant to protect the country from the effects of nuclear.
“Radiation Protection Authority of Zimbabwe wishes to inform that it is now a requirement in terms of Statutory 281 of 2020 that all vehicles imported into Zimbabwe from countries that experienced nuclear incidents (Japan) be inspected for radiation contamination with immediate effect,” read part of the notice.
According to the statement light motor vehicles and minibuses will pay US$10 for contamination inspection and US$50 for de-contamination. Buses, heavy vehicles, haulage trucks and trailers will attract US$20 for inspection and US$100 for de-contamination.
The development comes after Zimbabwe imposed a ban on the importation of used vehicles older than 10 years as the country moves to revitalize its automotive industry and cut greenhouse gas emissions.
Commercial vehicles such as tractors, haulage trucks, earth-moving equipment and other specialized vehicles used in mining and construction will be exempt from the new requirement.
Speaking during his delivery of the 2021 national budget Finance minister Mthuli Ncube said about 1.3 billion U.S. dollars was spent on importing buses and light commercial and passenger vehicles from 2015 to September 2020.
“This is despite the existence of capacity by the local motor industry to assemble the above-mentioned range of motor vehicles,” said Ncube.
Over the past decade, Zimbabwe has witnessed an unprecedented rise in the volume of vehicular traffic on the roads, driven by the availability of cheap imported cars mainly from Japan.