Regulations for trade in goods

  • Customs declarations must be lodged by licensed customs agents.

Prohibitions

  • It is strictly prohibited to import the following goods
Any goods which are indecent, obscene, or objectionable Any goods which might tend to deprave the morals of the inhabitants Base or counterfeit coins Counterfeit items
Cultural artefacts and other objects of cultural importance Explosive material Henna Narcotics
Qilika Palm tree and any products thereof Prison-made and penitentiary-made goods Spirituous beverages containing preparations, extracts, essences, or chemical products that are noxious or injurious
Stills and all apparatus or parts of apparatus capable of being used for the production or refining of alcohols

Source: Zambia Development Agency, WTO Trade Policy Review (for Zambia, 2016).

  • Zambian laws prohibit the exportation of a limited number of goods, notably raw animal hides and skins, logs, wood charcoal.

Trade procedures

  • Costs are much less important in Zambia (compared to the rest of Sub-Saharan Africa).
Import procedures Export procedures
Time per consignment (hours) Cost per consignment (USD) Time per consignment (hours) Cost per consignment (USD)
Border compliance Zambia 120 380 120 370
Sub-Saharan Africa 126.3 684.3 97.3 605.8
Documentary

compliance

Zambia 72 175 96 200
Sub-Saharan Africa 97.7 283.5 72.8 168.8

Source: Doing Business Report (World Bank, 2019)

 

  • In addition to the basic documentation required, supplementary requirements are sometimes necessary to get the release of goods.
    The table displayed below presents the main import/export requirements and documentation applicable in Zambia
Document Need to be completed for
Customs export declaration (form CE 20) All imports and all exports
Basic supporting documentation (packing list, consignment note, cargo manifest, commercial invoice, airway bill, bill of lading) All imports and all exports
Transit document Importation/exportation via a third country (e..g Zimbabwe, South Africa)
Certificate of origin Taking advantage of preferential trade agreements signed by Zambia (China bilateral trade agreement, AGOA, EU, GSP,COMESA, SADC), applicable to imports and exports
Import permit Importation of unprocessed agricultural products (including unfortified household sugar), animals and animal products, plants and plan products, seeds, food
Import licensing Importation of motor vehicles, household sugar, pharmaceutical products
CITES certificate Importation or exportation of endangered species and any products or parts thereof as outlined by CITES
Seed certificate Exportation of seeds
Sanitary certificate Exportation of animals and animal products
Phytosanitary certificate Exportation of plants and plant products
Export permit/licence Exportation of maize grain, groats and flour, minerals, fertilizers, live animals, gemstones, scrap metal and firearms
Timber verification certificate Exportation of timber
Form E100 Exportation of goods from open stock
Form E101 Exportation of goods from a bonded warehouse
Form E102 Exportation of goods on which a drawback of duty is required
Form E200 Temporary exportation of goods for repair
Form  E201 Temporary exportation of goods for processing or manufacturing
Form  E202 Temporary exportation of goods for other purposes
Form  R300 Re-exportation of goods imported under temporary importation.

Sources: Zambia Revenue Authority, Zambia Development Agency, WTO Trade Policy Review (for Zambia, 2016).

Regulations for trade in services

Overview

  • According to a recent UNCTAD report (2016), the Zambian services sector is “fairly open”.
  • Zambia is a net services importer and notably imports transport services, business services and travel.
  • Zambia has unilaterally liberalized many service sectors, including energy, financial, transport and telecommunications distribution sectors.
    Most of these sectors have been opened up and regulatory reform initiated.
    Detailed information is provided below
Sector Openness to services trade
Banking Mode 1: Capital market liberalized. Cross-border lending and borrowing are permitted by both banks and households.

Mode 3: Private and foreign ownership is permitted (up to 100 percent).

Insurance Mode 1: Cross-border purchasing of insurance services is not permitted unless it can be proven that the type of insurance required is not available in Zambia.

Mode 3: Private and foreign ownership permitted (up to 100 percent). Foreign firms must be incorporated locally to open a branch.

Telecom (fixed) Mode 1: Callback services and Voice over IP (VoIP) are illegal and there are high access charges for call termination through the incumbent.

Mode 3: Private and foreign ownership permitted in principle (30 percent of equity must be domestically owned). The Zamtel de facto monopoly on international gateway limits competition for international services. VoIP and callback services are illegal.

Telecom (Mobile) Mode 1: Callback services and VoIP are illegal and there are high access (mobile) charges for call termination through the incumbent.

Mode 3: Private and foreign-owned firms entry allowed to bid for competitively tendered licenses (at least 30 percent of equity must be domestically owned). Currently, four licenses have been allocated. All firms (foreign and domestic) must use Zamtel’s international gateway.

Accounting Mode 3: No restrictions on foreign presence.

Mode 4: Restrictions through economic means test on visa work permit requirements.

Tourism Mode 3: No restrictions on foreign investment.

Mode 4: Limitations of the number of authorized intra-corporate transferees.

Source: Zambia Development Agency.

WTO services commitments

  • Under the General Agreement on Trade Services (GATS), Zambia has made market access commitments in many services sectors, including certain business services, construction and related engineering services, healthcare and social services, and tourism and travel-related service.

Scheduled specific commitments of Zambia at the WTO

Sectors Limitations to market access Limitations to national treatment
Professional services: accountancy, medical and dental services; services provided by midwives, nurses, physiotherapists and paramedical personnel None None
Other business services: technical testing and analysis services, services incidental to mining exploration; construction and related engineering services. None None
Health-related and social services: hospital services; other human health services None None
Tourism and travel-related services Unbound except for measures on the entry and temporary stay of natural persons employed in management and specialized jobs for implementation of FDI (mode 4). Unbound except:

a. foreign controlled firm to get Bank of Zambia authority for loans and overdrafts to one third of paid up capital (mode 3).

b. for measures on the entry and temporary stay of natural persons employed in management and specialized jobs for implementation of FDI (mode 4).

Source: UNCTAD (2016), Ministry of Commerce, Trade and Industry