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Everything You Need to Know About Running a Small Business in Zimbabwe


Zimbabwe is a developing country, so it’s no surprise that it can be difficult to start and run a business there. Here’s what you need to know about setting up shop in this landlocked African nation:

The Basics

A small business is any company that has fewer than 100 employees. There are many types of small businesses, including:

  • Sole traders who operate their businesses on their own and don’t hire anyone else. They may sell goods or services, or both.
  • Partnerships where two or more people work together in a business and share the profits equally. The partners can also be known as “joint ventures” or “limited liability companies” (LLCs).
  • Corporations are owned by shareholders who receive dividends on their investment if there are profits after all expenses have been paid by the company; corporations also have limited liability protection against lawsuits filed against them by creditors or customers who feel they’ve been wronged in some way by actions taken by employees within an organization’s walls–but this protection doesn’t extend beyond those walls!

What Are the Main Types of Business Structures?

There are many different business structures. Some of them are:

  • Sole proprietorship. You can operate your business as a sole proprietorship (or simply, “sole”) if you’re the only owner of the company and you don’t have any partners or employees. You’ll be responsible for all debts and obligations incurred by your company, but there won’t be any legal separation between yourself and your business assets.
  • Partnership. A partnership is created when two or more people agree to share ownership and responsibility for running a business together–but unlike in a corporation, there isn’t an official document that spells out each partner’s rights or responsibilities; these things are negotiated on an ad hoc basis as needed by each individual partnership agreement (or “prenuptial”).

Legal Requirements for Starting a Business in Zimbabwe

The following is a list of documents required for starting a business in Zimbabwe:

  • Business name. The name must be distinguishable from other businesses and not be offensive or misleading, and it must not contain numerals (e.g., “Numbers Company”). If you’re incorporating your company, use the name on your certificate of incorporation as your official business name; otherwise, choose something else that reflects what you do without being too generic (e.g., “Carpentry Shop” vs “Shop”).
  • Corporate name (if applicable). If you’re incorporating your company, this will also be displayed on legal documents like invoices and contracts instead of just under its trade name–so make sure both names are clear on their face value!

Licensing and Registration

  • Business License: A business license is a document issued by the government that gives you permission to operate your business.
  • Business Registration: A business registration is a document issued by the government that confirms your existence as an independent entity. It’s similar to registering your car or buying insurance, but for businesses instead of cars or people!

Both licenses and registrations require certain information about how you want to run things at your company (e.g., what type of products/services you’ll offer). The process can take several months depending on how busy the relevant agencies are at any given time. If there isn’t enough staff available to handle all of their workloads, then there may be delays in processing applications until more employees are hired or trained up properly so don’t expect everything will go smoothly right away–just stick with it until everything gets sorted out!

Taxes and Fees

Import taxes are the charges levied on goods that are imported into a country. Import duties are an additional tax charged on top of these import taxes, and they’re generally only imposed on luxury items or goods that have been imported in large quantities. Customs fees are also charged when bringing in goods from another country, but they’re usually lower than both import taxes and duties because they’re calculated based on the value of your shipment and not its contents.

Importing is not necessarily more expensive than exporting; it all depends on what type of products you’re importing or exporting, as well as where they came from or where they’ll go next. For example: If someone wants to buy Zimbabwean diamonds from South Africa (which has higher diamond prices), then chances are good that those diamonds will cost more than if someone were buying them directly from Zimbabwean mines where prices tend toward lower end values overall.* This means there’s no one-size fits all approach when deciding whether or not running an import/export business would be profitable enough for long term success.*

Other Requirements and Information You’ll Need to Know About Starting a Business in Zimbabwe

  • You will need to register your business name with the Registrar of Companies.
  • If you are trading internationally, VAT registration is mandatory. To do this, visit the Zimbabwe Revenue Authority (ZIMRA) website and follow their instructions on how to register as an approved vendor or customer.
  • If you employ people or pay them any kind of salary or wage, then PAYE comes into play: it stands for Pay As You Earn and requires employers to deduct tax from employees’ paychecks every month before remitting it directly to ZIMRA on behalf of themselves and their staff members who are eligible for this benefit (which means all those who earn more than $500 per month).

Running a small business in Zimbabwe can be tricky, but it’s not impossible.

Running a small business in Zimbabwe can be tricky, but it’s not impossible. The country has a long history of economic instability and political turmoil that have made running a successful business difficult for many entrepreneurs over the years. However, things are looking up now that President Emmerson Mnangagwa has taken office after Robert Mugabe was ousted in November 2017.

While Zimbabwe is still recovering from decades of economic decline, there are still plenty of opportunities for people who want to start their own businesses here–especially those who know what they’re doing! If you want to open up shop in this beautiful country without getting lost along the way (and saving yourself some time), then read on!


Zimbabwe is a country with a lot of potential, but it’s also one that has been struggling for decades. Running a small business in Zimbabwe can be tricky, but it’s not impossible. You just need to do your research and make sure you have all of your bases covered before making any decisions about where or how


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