Exchange Control Act

Link to law: http://www.parlzim.gov.zw/acts-list/exchange-control-act-22-05
Published: 2004

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ARRANGEMENT OF SECTIONS

Section

1. Short title.

2. Regulatory powers of the President.

3. Evidence and presumptions.

4. Financial provisions.

5. Offences and penalties.

6. Special jurisdiction of magistrates.

7. Forfeitures.

8. Secrecy.

9. Use of information for private gain.

10. Recovered Foreign Currency Fund and reward for information.

AN ACT to confer powers and impose duties and restrictions in relation to gold,

currency, securities, exchange transactions, payments and debts, and the import,

export, transfer and settlement of property, and for purposes connected with the

matters aforesaid.

[Date of commencement: 1st June, 1965.]

1 Short title

This Act may be cited as the Exchange Control Act [Chapter 22:05].

2 Regulatory powers of the President

(1) Notwithstanding anything to the contrary contained in any enactment, the

President may make such regulations relating directly or indirectly to-

(a) gold, currency and securities and transactions relating thereto; and

(b) exchange transactions; and

(c) the control of-

(i) imports into and exports from Zimbabwe; and

(ii) the transfer or settlement of property; and

(iii) payments; and

(iv) transactions in relation to debts;

as he deems fit.

(2) Regulations made under subsection (1) may provide for-

(a) the prohibition or restriction of dealings in or possession of any gold,

currency or securities;

(b) the prohibition or restriction of the importation into and exportation

from Zimbabwe of any property;

(c) the acquisition by any person or assignment to any person or vesting

in any person of any property, other than land, or any right thereto and for the

determination of compensation in respect thereof;

(d) the prohibition or restriction of any dealing in or in relation to any

property with persons resident outside Zimbabwe;

(e) requiring any person to make statements or produce documents for the

purposes of such regulations;

( f ) entering on any premises and the search of any premises or person for

TITLE 22 the purpose of giving effect to any such regulation;

(g) empowering such authorities, persons or classes of persons as may be

specified in the regulations-

(i) to make orders, rules or directions for any of the purposes for which

regulations may be made under this Act;

(ii) to confer the power to make such orders, rules or directions on any

other authority, person or class of persons;

(h) the registration or licensing of persons who carry on any business of

dealing in currency, and the fees payable in respect of the application for , and issue

and renewal of, registration certificates or licences.

[new para inserted by Act 2 of 2002, with effect from the 5th July,1996, - which Act

was declared on the 27th February, 2002 to be of no force or effect by the Supreme

Court S-10-2002-: and further amended by the General Laws Amendment (No.2) Act

2002 promulgated on the 24th January, 2003 - with retrospective effect, in terms of

clause 47 - from the 5th July, 1996 - Editor.]

(3) Different regulations, orders, rules or directions may be made under this section

for, or in relation to, different persons or classes of persons, countries, and generally,

in relation to anything with respect to which provision is made in subsection (1).

(4) The power to make regulations, orders, rules or directions under this section shall

extend to the making of regulations, orders, rules or directions having extra-territorial

operation.

3 Evidence and presumptions

(1) Any document purporting to be a permit, authority, permission, direction, notice,

order or other instrument made or issued by or on behalf of any person or authority in

pursuance of any provision of this Act, and to be signed by or on behalf of any such

person or authority, shall be received in evidence, and shall, until the contrary is

proved, be deemed to be a permit or other instrument so made or issued and signed.

(2) Prima facie evidence of a document referred to in subsection (1) may be given by

production of a document purporting to be certified as a true copy thereof by such

person and in such manner as may be prescribed in regulations made in terms of

section two.

(3) Any person charged with any act or omission which is an offence under this Act if

the act is done or omitted to be done without a permit, exemption, permission or other

authorization, shall be presumed to have done or to have omitted to do such act

without such permit, exemption, permission or other authorization, as the case may

be, unless it is proved that he was in possession of such permit, exemption,

permission or other authorization, as the case may be, when he performed or omitted

to perform the act in question.

(4) Any person who is required by or in terms of this Act to furnish to any person any

information or to produce any books, accounts, documents or any other records shall

be presumed to be in possession or control of, or to have access to, such information

or books, accounts, documents or other records unless the contrary is proved.

4 Financial provisions

Any expenses incurred under or by virtue of this Act by the State or any department

thereof shall be paid out of moneys appropriated for the purpose by Act of

Parliament.

5 Offences and penalties

(1) Subject to subsection (2), a person who, either within or outside Zimbabwe-

(a) contravenes or fails to comply with-

(i) any provision of this Act other than section eight; or

(ii) the terms or conditions of any permit, authority, permission, direction,notice, order or other instrument made or issued under or by virtue of this Act;

or

(b) for the purposes of this Act, makes any statement or produces any

document which is false in any material particular;

shall be guilty of an offence.

(2) It shall be a good defence to any proceedings against a person in respect of an

offence in terms of paragraph (b) of subsection (1) to prove that at the time when the

statement was made or the document was produced, as the case may be, he had no

knowledge of the falsity thereof.

(3) Subject to this section, a person convicted of an offence in terms of subsection (1)

shall be liable to such fine or to imprisonment for such period as the court deems fit

or to both such fine and such imprisonment.

(4) Where a person is convicted of an offence in terms of-

(a) paragraph (a) of subsection (1) which involves gold, currency,

security, goods or any other property whatsoever; or

(b) paragraph (b) of subsection (1) and the statement was made or the

document was produced for the purpose of or in connection with the exportation

from, or acquisition outside, Zimbabwe of any gold, currency, security, goods or

other property whatsoever in contravention of the provisions of this Act;

the court shall, whether or not it imposes any sentence of imprisonment, impose a

fine of not less than the value of the gold, currency, security, goods or other property

concerned unless the convicted person satisfies the court that there are special reasons

in the particular case, which shall be recorded by the court, why a lesser fine should

be imposed.

(5) Where an individual is convicted of an offence in terms of-

(a) subsection (1) which involves a failure-

(i) to furnish to any person any information; or

(ii) to produce any books, accounts or documents or any other records;

or

(b) subsection (1) and he has previously been convicted of an offence,

whether similar in nature or not, in terms of subsection (1);

the court shall, in addition to any fine which it might be required by subsection (4) to

impose or which it otherwise deems fit, impose a sentence of imprisonment for such

period as it deems fit.

(6) Where a person-

(a) is convicted of an offence in terms of-

(i) paragraph (a) of subsection (1) which involves the exportation from,

or acquisition outside, Zimbabwe of any gold, currency, security, goods or other

property whatsoever in contravention of this Act; or

(ii) paragraph (b) of subsection (1) and the statement was made or the

document was produced for the purposes of or in connection with the exportation

from, or acquisition outside, Zimbabwe of any gold, currency, security, goods or

other property whatsoever in contravention of this Act;

and

(b) does not satisfy the court that-

(i) foreign currency in an amount of not less than the value of such

property which has been exported from, or acquired outside, Zimbabwe has been

received in Zimbabwe; or

(ii) where the offence involves the exportation from Zimbabwe of such

property, such property has been returned to Zimbabwe;

the court may, before passing sentence, adjourn the proceedings for such period notexceeding three months as the court deems fit in order to give the convicted person an

opportunity of so satisfying the court on the resumption of the proceedings.

(7) Where a person convicted of an offence referred to in paragraph (a) of subsection

(4) does not satisfy the court as to one or other of the requirements mentioned in

subparagraphs (i) and (ii) of paragraph (b) of subsection (6), the court shall-

[Amended by Act 22 of 2001 with effect from the 20th May, 2002.]

(a) in all cases have regard to that fact as a factor in aggravation of

sentence; and

(b) if the convicted person is an individual and the value of the property

concerned exceeds the amount of a fine of level eight, impose a sentence of

imprisonment for such period as the court deems fit in addition to any fine required

by subsection (4).

[Amended by Act 22 of 2001 with effect from the 10th September, 2002.]

(8) For the purposes of subsection (4), the fact that a person is not able to pay the

minimum fine required by that subsection shall not be regarded as a special reason

why such fine should not be imposed.

(9) Where any gold, currency, security, goods or other property whatsoever has been

exported from, or acquired outside, Zimbabwe in accordance with-

(a) regulations made under this Act and the person concerned contravenes

any requirement contained in such regulations; or

(b) a permit, authority, permission, direction, notice, order or other

instrument made or issued under or by virtue of this Act and the person concerned

fails to comply with any term or condition thereof;

he shall be deemed, for the purposes of this section, to have exported the property

from Zimbabwe or to have acquired the property outside Zimbabwe, as the case may

be, in contravention of this Act.

6 Special jurisdiction of magistrates

Notwithstanding anything contained in the Magistrates Court Act [Chapter 7:10] or in

any other enactment-

Notwithstanding anything contained in the Magistrates Court Act [Chapter 7:10] or in

any other enactment-

(a) a court of a regional magistrate shall have special jurisdiction to

impose a fine not exceeding level twelve or imprisonment for a period not exceeding

seven years or both such fine and such imprisonment;

[Amended by Act 22 of 2001 with effect from the 10th September, 2002.]

(a1) a court of a provincial or senior magistrate shall have special

jurisdiction, on summary trial or on remittal by the Attorney-General, to impose a

fine not exceeding level twelve or imprisonment for a period not exceeding five years

or both such fine and such imprisonment;

[Inserted by Act 22 of 2001 with effect from the 10th September, 2002.]

(b) a court of a magistrate other than a regional, provincial or senior

magistrate shall have special jurisdiction, on summary trial or on remittal by the

Attorney-General of the case for trial or sentence, to impose a fine not exceeding

level ten or imprisonment for a period not exceeding two years or both such fine and

such imprisonment;

[Amended by Act 22 of 2001 with effect from the 10th September, 2002.]

in respect of an offence in terms of this Act:

Provided that if the court is required by subsection (4) of section five to impose a fine

which exceeds the amount specified in paragraph (a) or (b), the court may impose

such fine.

7 Forfeitures (1) Where a person is convicted of an offence in terms of section five which was

committed by means of or in respect of any gold, currency, security, goods or other

property whatsoever, the court shall, unless the convicted person satisfies it that there

are special reasons in the particular case, which shall be recorded by the court, why

forfeiture to the State should not take place, declare such property or the rights of the

convicted person thereto to be forfeited to the State:

Provided that such declaration shall not affect any rights which any person, other than

the convicted person, may have to the property in question if it is proved that he

was-

(a) unaware that the offence was being or would be committed; or

(b) unable to prevent the commission of the offence.

(2) Subsections (3), (4), (5) and (6) of section 62 of the Criminal Procedure and

Evidence Act [Chapter 9:07] shall apply, mutatis mutandis, where a declaration is

made in terms of subsection (1).

8 Secrecy

(1) Except for the purposes of this Act or the compilation of statistics or when

ordered to do so by a court, no person exercising any functions under this Act shall

either within or outside Zimbabwe disclose any information relating to any person,

firm or business, acquired in the exercise of such functions.

(2) Any person who contravenes subsection (1) shall be guilty of an offence and

liable to a fine not exceeding level six or to imprisonment for a period not exceeding

one year or to both such fine and such imprisonment.

[inserted by Act 22/2001 with effect from 10th September,2002]

9 Use of information for private gain

(1) No person exercising any functions under this Act shall, for his personal gain,

make use of any information which has come to his knowledge in the exercise of

those functions.

(2) Any person who contravenes subsection (1) shall be guilty of an offence and

liable to-

(a) a fine not exceeding level ten or double the amount of his gain,

whichever is the greater; or

(b) imprisonment for a period not exceeding five years;

or to both such fine and such imprisonment..

[Inserted by Act 22 of 2001 with effect from the 10th September, 2002.]

10 Recovered Foreign Currency Fund and reward for information

(1) In this section, "Reserve Bank" means the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe referred to

in section 4 of the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe Act [Chapter 22:15].

(2) There is hereby established for the purposes of subsection (6) a fund, called the

Recovered Foreign Currency Fund, which shall be administered by the Board of the

Reserve Bank.

(3) The moneys of the Recovered Foreign Currency Fund shall consist of-

(a) all convertible foreign currency that is declared to be forfeited to the

State in terms of section seven; and

(b) convertible foreign currency purchased by the Reserve Bank for the

purposes of the Recovered Foreign Currency Fund.

(4) The financial year of the Recovered Foreign Currency Fund shall be a period of

twelve months ending on the 31st December.

(5) Section 30 of the Audit and Exchequer Act [Chapter 22:03] shall apply to the

Recovered Foreign Currency Fund.

(6) The Board of the Reserve Bank shall award to any person a monetary reward for

information provided or any measure taken-

(a) which results in detection and prosecution of an offence in terms of

section five and the consequent recovery of convertible foreign currency that is

declared to be forfeited to the State in terms of section seven; or

(b) which results in the recovery of convertible foreign

currency,notwithstanding that no prosecution of an offence in terms of section five is

instituted in connection with that offence.

(7) Any amount to be awarded in terms of subsection (6) shall be at the rate of ten

per centum of the convertible foreign currency that is-

(a) declared to be forfeited in terms of paragraph (a) of section seven; or

(b) recovered in terms of paragraph (b) of section seven;

as the case may be.

(8) At the end of the financial year of the Recovered Foreign Currency Fund, the

balance of the total amount of convertible foreign currency remaining in the Fund

after the payment of the amounts awarded during that financial year terms of

subsection (6) shall form part of the Consolidated Revenue Fund.

[New section inserted by section 9 of S.I. 14 of 2004 with effect from the 30th

January, 2004. The section number has been corrected by me - Editor.]