Zimbabwe/ 3.4 International cultural co-operation  

3.4.4 Direct professional co-operation

Zimbabwe does not have a policy in which it supports training of foreign artists in Zimbabwe. Most of the training programmes that take place happen outside of government’s facilitation.

Zimbabwean musicians, crafters and stone sculptures regularly tour other countries and continents to perform and showcase their works. Zimbabwe's legendary Book Cafe, home to Harare's vibrant live and alternative cultural scene and artists´ centre at Harare Culture House was launched in the United Kingdom in 2010. It will host Afro-Jazz, Poetry, Afrobeat and Comedy.

While there is a lot of determination amongst artists and promoters of arts and culture to bring into the country artists from other countries to perform in the country, thereby promoting professional cooperation there are some government policies which end up frustrating these efforts. For instance all foreign artists coming to perform in the country are supposed to have work permits which cost USD 500 each. This situation has greatly affected even organisers of arts festivals wishing to bring in foreign artists to perform locally. According to the Daily News of Thursday 19 July 2012 one of the major challenges which the Intwasa Festival faced this year was that, even with the assistance of the National Arts Council of Zimbabwe, the organisation failed to get the exorbitant fees for foreign artists’s work permits waivered. Even collaborations between local and international or foreign artists are in most cases frustrated by government regulations and requirements for such kind of work.

According to a research undertaken by the Zimbojam the following amounts have to be paid by any promoter who brings in a foreign artist to perform in Zimbabwe:

  1. The Zimbabwe Revenue Authority has to be paid tax before the artist can perform based on the contract given to the artist. They can charge up to USD 1000 as tax.
  2. Censorship Board is paid USD 300 to examine and approve an act before it can come into the country.
  3.  Immigration authorities need USD 500 to process a work permit for the artist.
  4. The National Arts Council of Zimbabwe is paid USD320 for foreign artist clearance.

Chapter published: 27-08-2012