Zimbabwe's state-run media says foreign newspapers will have to pay an import duty after concerns by the government that "hostile foreign newspapers are coming into Zimbabwe."

The state-controlled newspaper The Herald says foreign publications will now be classified as luxury goods and will have to pay an import duty of at least 40 percent of the total cost per kilogram. The new regulation applies to foreign newspapers, journals, magazines and periodicals.

Zimbabwe's secretary of information and publicity, George Charamba, is quoted as saying the government is trying "to protect and defend the national media space."

Charamba also said Zimbabwe media should do more national reporting ahead of a June 27 presidential runoff election between President Mugabe and opposition leader Morgan Tsvangirai.

Charamba warned the government may take further action and said he hoped no one would be hurt in the process.

Some information for this report was provided by AFP.