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INFORMAL ECONOMY FORMALISATION IN ZIMBABWE UNDER NATIONAL POLICY FRAMEWORK THEME 7 – DEVOLUTION

The Objective of this Theme is the empowerment of citizens to be in control of their local communities through the decentralisation of state administration and authority. The principle of devolution refers to the decentralization of state authority, giving greater decision-making powers to provincial and local authorities in policy, budget and execution. The following net benefits can be realised through a successful process of devolution of power: • Bringing government closer to the people. • People-centred decision-making and development. • Local people will gain from local resources and will have access to local tenders from procurement boards. • Cost-saving as a result of local rather than centralised authority. • Devolution will facilitate the ease of doing business for the informal economy as well as the transition to formalisation as registration and licensing can be done locally and facilitated in a local language.

INFORMAL ECONOMY FORMALISATION IN ZIMBABWE UNDER NATIONAL POLICY FRAMEWORK THEME 6 – SOCIAL PROTECTION

The Objective of this Theme is the provision of affordable social services in the form of pensions, medical aid and insurance to informal economy business-people and workers. Social protection usually refers to the provision of social services by government, including health services, insurance and pension programmes and child protection services.  The informal economy also offers a significant opportunity for formal private sector businesses to provide social protection services such as medical aid, insurances for traders and their goods and funeral insurance policies.

INFORMAL ECONOMY FORMALISATION IN ZIMBABWE UNDER NATIONAL POLICY FRAMEWORK THEME 5 – FINANCIAL INCLUSION

The Objective of this Theme is improvement of the level of provision of financial services to informal economy businesses. The Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe published its National Financial Inclusion Strategy for 2016 – 2020 in 2015. Financial inclusion is defined in the document as “the effective use of a wide range of quality, affordable and accessible financial services, provided in a fair and transparent manner through formal/regulated entities, by all Zimbabweans”. Key pillars of the Financial Inclusion Strategy are: i. Financial innovation ii. Financial literacy iii. Financial consumer protection iv. Microfinance

INFORMAL ECONOMY FORMALISATION IN ZIMBABWE UNDER NATIONAL POLICY FRAMEWORK THEME 4 – FORMALISATION

The Objective of this Theme is the provision of access to economic freedom and social protection to informal economy businesses, in order to provide sustainable jobs and income for informal economy workers. Section 65 of the Constitution of Zimbabwe Amendment (No 20) Act, 2013 provides for the labour rights of all workers including the right to form and join trade unions and employee organisations of their choice and to participate in the lawful activities of these unions and organisations. The rights of workers in the informal sector must be recognised and protected. According to International Labour Organisation (ILO) Recommendation 204 (2015), formalisation of the informal sector is not simply registration of informal businesses as legal entities that yield tax revenues, but rather a rights-based transition that provides a convenient way in which micro and small businesses can be registered as legal entities.

INFORMAL ECONOMY FORMALISATION IN ZIMBABWE UNDER NATIONAL POLICY FRAMEWORK THEME 3 – MARKET ACCESS AND INFRASTRUCTURE

The Objective of this Theme is the establishment of secure market spaces for informal economy businesses in both urban and rural areas. 1. Provision by Local Authorities of Appropriate Market Spaces and Facilities for Informal Economy Businesses Local authorities need to engage informal traders from the start to ensure that market spaces and facilities are appropriate in terms of providing access to markets as well as water and electricity. The design should also ensure that goods are protected from natural elements and that there is no congestion.   The provision of storage facilities and toilets, together with facilities that meet the needs of women and PWDs and security for the traders who will use them, is essential.    Failure to consult will result in wasted resources as the facilities will not be utilized.

Women in Leadership are still aggrieved by Political space oppression

Melody Chigarande former ZCIEA Kwekwe Territorial president who participated in ZCIEA Women Can Do It Training programs aimed at capacitating women in the political leadership space. Women Can Do It programs were conducted by ZCIEA in 2018 before the harmonized election in Zimbabwe. In the 2018 National Harmonised elections, Melody was elected as Councilor in Ward 5 Mbizo in Kwekwe.

INFORMAL ECONOMY FORMALISATION IN ZIMBABWE UNDER NATIONAL POLICY FRAMEWORK THEME 2 – DEVELOPMENT OF LINKAGES BETWEEN THE INFORMAL ECONOMY AND FORMAL BUSINESSES

The Objective of this Theme is the development of a conducive business operating environment for informal economy businesses and workers. Creation of Business Synergies and Relationships with Business Membership Organisations (BMOs) Synergies must be created between the informal economy and formal business organizations. This will require identification of what the informal sector can supply and the development of a business case and platform through which the two sectors can discuss issues of mutual concern.   Appropriate government policies can facilitate the creation of such synergies.   For example the formal business sector can assist in providing space for informal traders by way of creating supply linkages that are profitable for both parties. Informal traders can reach agreements with formal businesses to become part of their supply chains.

INFORMAL ECONOMY FORMALISATION IN ZIMBABWE UNDER NATIONAL POLICY FRAMEWORK THEME 1: RESPECT FOR AND RECOGNITION OF THE INFORMAL ECONOMY

The Objective of this Theme is to create an improved legal and policy framework that recognises and addresses the reality of the informal economy and those working in it. 1. Review and Update Current Laws Affecting the Informal Economy There is a need for all legislation, regulations and by-laws that affect the informal economy to be reviewed and amended where necessary to ensure that they reflect the best interests of the informal economy. At a national level Parliamentary Portfolio Committees will be asked to take on this task. Local by-laws will have to be reviewed by the relevant local authorities.

INFORMAL ECONOMY FORMALISATION IN ZIMBABWE UNDER NATIONAL POLICY FRAMEWORK

ZCIEA has been advocating for the recognition of the informal economy since 2017 when the organisation developed 4 Policy position papers which were used as an advocacy tool. During the Launch of the 4 Policy Position paper, ZCIEA made an effort to come up with the informal economy coalition with other informal economy organizations like Bulawayo Vendors and Traders Association (BVTA), Vendors Initiative for Social Economic Transformation (VISET), Women Alliance of Business Association of Zimbabwe (WABAZ) and Zimbabwe Cross Border Traders Association (ZCBTA) to strengthen the voice of Informal economy and influence policy change. The Coalition (Informal Economy Agenda) conducted series of advocacy engagements with policymakers to influence policy change and formalize the informal economy to improve the lives and working conditions of informal workers and traders in Zimbabwe.

Informal Economy creates Business linkage with Formal Economy

Zimbabwe Chamber of Informal Economy Associations through National Policy Framework for Informal Economy has been advocating for appropriate government policies that facilitate the development of synergies/linkages between Informal economy and formal businesses. Even though the government is yet to develop a policy that facilitates the development of linkages between the informal economy and formal businesses, ZCIEA Harare territorial women’s group managed to create supply linkage with a big formal institution (name withheld). This women’s group (12 members) received funds from the ZCIEA Resilience Building program to initiate projects of their choice. They decided to do a poultry project. They kicked off their project with 250 broilers, which grew well and reached 4 weeks without complications. 

ZCIEA Applauds COVID-19 Vaccination Program that Target Informal Economy Workers and Traders as Safety Measures at their Workplaces.

PRESS RELEASE 1 July 2021 ZCIEA Applauds COVID-19 Vaccination Program that Target Informal Economy Workers and Traders as Safety Measures at their Workplaces. The Zimbabwe Chamber of Informal Economy Associations (ZCIEA) appreciates the pronouncement by the Government on the 24th of June 2021 that the Informal Economy should be vaccinated to ensure their safety and curb the spread of COVID-19 in the country.

ZCIEA Responding to COVID-19 Effects -Providing Food Hampers Support to its Worst Vulnerable Members across the country

Zimbabwe Chamber of Informal Economy Associations (ZCIEA) has embarked on a food support program by distributing Food Hampers to its worst vulnerable members countrywide. The program started on the 19th of June 2021 and is targeting a total of 460 worst affected members across 46 Territories in the country. The goods in supply are valued at US$5 000,00.
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