Botswana announces heavier penalties for vegetable smugglers

Botswana revenue authorities have announced heavier penalties for individuals caught smuggling fruits and vegetables into the southern African country. Botswana Unified Revenue Service Commissioner General Jeanette Makgolo said they are concerned about the smuggling of vegetables and fruits since the import ban in January.

To tackle this, first-time offenders smuggling products valued at less than 2,500 pula (about 205 U.S. dollars) will be slapped with 50,000 pula as a penalty. For products smuggled with value at over 2,500 pula, offenders will get up to a maximum charge of 450,000 pula.

Botswana introduced a ban on the importation of certain fruits and vegetables by the country’s trade ministry in a move aimed to stimulate local production to self-sufficiency levels. Since then, there have been periods of severe shortages in retailers of certain products, especially those that are not in season.

Source: newsghana.com.gh


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