Blantyre City Council (BCC) says business activities in the city are on the rise and the council anticipates more businesses to be registered in the 2019/20 financial year.
The council’s director of commerce, industry and trade Dennis Chinseu said this in an interview yesterday on the sidelines of a media briefing on business premises licencing activities for the 2019/20 financial year.
He said the council registered 6 984 businesses in the 2018/19 financial year, a rise from 6 619 in the previous year.
In 2016/17 financial year, the council registered 6 378 businesses.
“It can be confidently said that business activities are on the increase and it is anticipated that 7 500 businesses will be licensed in the 2019/2020 financial year,” said Chinseu.
While reminding businesspersons to renew their business premise licences for the forthcoming financial year, he said the council issued 365 new business licences in the 2018/2019 financial year from 241 in the previous year and expectations are that 500 new businesses will be licensed in the 2019/20 financial year.
Chinseu warned that effective July 1, businesses operating without licences will be closed.
On revenue collection, he said their target for the previous financial year was projected at K480 million, but they collected about K470 million.
In the next financial year, the council prjoects to collect K520 million.
The council’s spokesperson Anthony Kasunda is on record as having told The Nation that the council had projected to collect K3.9 billion from 26 markets.
However, the council by then collected K1.5 billion from market fees and business licences.
In 2017, The Nation reported that councils had been losing revenue due to fraud.