Beitbridge border post. image credit

Beitbridge border post. image credit

ZIMSEC O Level Commerce: Measures the government can use to control trade

Trade (tariff) barriers.

  • These are measures taken by government to reduce imports and in some cases ban trade completely with some countries.

Customs (import) duty

  • A tax levied on imported dutiable goods.
  • Makes imports more expensive when compared to locally made goods.


  • A limitation on the quantity of goods to be imported.
  • Reduces the quantity o imports.


  • A complete forbidding trade with other countries either for political or health reasons.
  • Reduces imports to zero.

Foreign exchange control.

  • The government, through the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe, may ration or refuse to offer foreign currency to importers.
  • Restricts importer from buying goods.

Import licences

  • The government may refuse to issue new licences or renew expired import licences.
  • Reduces the number of importers and consequently imports.


  • The government may subsidise ( give money to) exporters.
  • Exporting becomes cheaper and importing remains expensive.

Devaluation of local currency.

  • The local Zimbabwean currency will be worth less in foreign currency terms.
  • Imports thus become more expensive and exports much cheaper.
  • For example if an item costs US $500 to import and the exchange rate is US$1=Z$2
  • The item will cost Z$1000 to import.
  • If the Zimbabwean currency is devalued to US$1 = Z$ 4
  • The item will cost Z$2000.
  • On the other hand if an item costs Z$1000 to export at the former exchange rate of US$1: Z$ 2 It will cost US$500 on the international market.
  • When the currency is devalued to US$ 1: Z$4 the time will cost US$250 on the international market.

To access more topics go to the Commerce Notes page.

Quick NetOne, Telecel, Africom, And Econet Airtime Recharge

If anything goes wrong, chat with us using the chat feature at the bottom right of this screen