HON. MARKHAM: Thank you Mr. Speaker. My research with the bank is that some of them, particularly the big banks, are 8 weeks behind on the allocation of foreign currency. As a policy, could the Minister of Finance please check as to what is happening with the system – because in trading, if you wait for 8 weeks and your money is taken a week before, that is 9 weeks which is two months that your money has been taken out of your cash flow before you receive the foreign currency. I am not blaming anyone but all I am asking is, as a policy, could Government check what the issue is delaying this by 9 weeks? Thank you.
THE MINISTER OF JUSTICE, LEGAL AND PARLIAMENTARY AFFAIRS (HON. ZIYAMBI): Thank you Mr. Speaker Sir. This is very specific. I know that the banks as a matter of policy do not debit your account before they effect a transfer, but if that is happening with certain banks, I think it is a specific question or issue that needs to be relayed to the Reserve Bank and subsequently to the Ministry of Finance. As a matter of policy, once you get allocated and you are notified, the bank will tell you to fund your account if it is under-funded or they will inform you that we are going to debit your account the equivalent of what they will be transferring. So any issues that are administrative or otherwise that the Hon. Member is encountering are best dealt by the bank or the Reserve Bank. I thank you.
HON. MUSHORIWA: Hon. Speaker the Minister of Finance as referred to by Hon. Markham had indicated that everything is in order but we have just confirmed with the bank that the larger banks are 8 weeks and the smaller banks are 4 weeks in arrears in terms of receiving the allocated money from the auction system. Can the Hon. Minister explain why those delays are there?
THE MINISTER OF JUSTICE, LEGAL AND PARLIAMENTARY AFFAIRS (HON. ZIYAMBI): Thank you Mr. Speaker. Again, my response is that the bankers are the ones that are in communication with the Reserve Bank that releases the funds. They are best placed to explain what will be happening. The policy of Government is to go to the auction, you are allocated funds and the communication is done by the Reserve Bank through your bankers. If anyone is experiencing any problems, it is the respective bank that is supposed to explain to customers what the delay is, if any. If they are not satisfied, they can approach the Reserve Bank which can explain, because this is truly a specific issue that is not related to our policy to ensure that we access foreign currency through the auction system. I thank you.
THE HON. SPEAKER: May I suggest Hon. Leader of Government business that you have some conversation with the Minister of Finance to check whether these delays are highly pronounced so that corrective action can be taken. Thank you.