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ZBC Pegs Licence Fees In US Dollars

The Zimbabwe Broadcasting Corporation (ZBC) has made an upward review of television and radio licence fees for motor vehicles, household and business entities following approval by the Government.

Statutory Instrument 264 of 2021 was published today following approval by the Minister of Information Publicity and Broadcasting Services, Monica Mutsvangwa in terms of the Broadcasting Services Act.

A radio licence for a rural household now costs  US$5 per quarter whilst urban dwellers will part with US$10 per quarter and US$25 per quarter for television.

Business entities will pay US$ 100 per year for radio licence and US$ 200 per for television licence. Private vehicles will pay US$23 per quarter while employer owned vehicles will pay US$50 per quarter.

According to the notice, the stipulated fees will be paid in US dollars or local currency at the foreign currency auction rate in terms of the Exchange Control.

“The fees stipulated in the Second Schedule above may be payable in local currency at the foreign currency auction rate in terms of the Exchange Control (Exclusive use of Zimbabwe dollar for Domestic Transactions) (Amendment) Regulations, 2020, published in Statutory Instrument 185 of 2020. The Broadcasting (Listeners’ Licences) (Fees) Notice. 2021, published in Statutory Instrument 23 of 2021, is hereby repealed,” read part of SI 264 of 2021.

The move is part of efforts to boost the state broadcaster’s revenue lines and sustain high cost of operations.

However, it comes at a time most ordinary Zimbabweans are struggling to access foreign currency for domestic use as wages are mainly quoted in the local currency.

Speaking during a post cabinet briefing recently, the Minister of Information, Publicity and Broadcasting Services, Monica Mutsvangwa said cabinet had noted with concern that the equipment for radio and television was outdated and require to be upgraded.

“Cabinet noted that the Zimbabwe Broadcasting Corporation’s equipment for both radio and television studios is obsolete and has outlived its lifespan, and therefore requires urgent replacement to enable the broadcaster to improve service delivery

“Zimbabwe Broadcasting Corporation will soon be launching two more channels towards fulfillment of its mandate, and for these channels to be effectively rolled out, in addition to the on-going digitalization of its transmitters, the organisation has to be capacitated.” said Mutsvangwa

Most Zimbabweans are earning salaries below the poverty datum line and are relying on the parallel market to get foreign currency.

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