Prices of commodities in some shops recently went up following the announcement of Statutory 127 of 2021 which introduced measures that regulate the foreign currency exchange rate.
SI 127 of 2021 introduced by President Emmerson Mnangagwa, through the Presidential Powers (Temporary Measures) (Financial Laws Amendment) Regulations, forced businesses to use the US$1: ZWL$84 exchange rate.
The Statutory Instrument also made it illegal to give customers a discount for paying for goods or services in foreign currency, refuse to take local currency payments at the official exchange rate and issue Zimbabwe dollar receipts for goods paid for in foreign currency.
Industry flatly rejected the SI and has openly opposed the move.
Meanwhile, prices of some commodities have started going up following the introduction of the S1. Below are the changes:
- 660 ml green bottle of beer went up from US$1.50 to US$1.80
- 375 ml pint was raised from 80 cents to US$1.
- For goods that cost $10 000 last week, a customer could pay US$83.35 because shops used a weaker exchange rate of $120 per US dollar. However, this week, a customer needed US$111.10 for the same goods using the official exchange rate.
- 2 litre Pure Drop cooking oil went up from $340 to $465
- 2kg packet of brown sugar rose from $200 to $299.
Other commodities whose prices have increased Mazoe Orange Crush, a cordial drink, washing powder, meat, and toothpaste.
Some consumers told NewZimbabwe that the foreign currency measures have resulted in businesses raising prices of their commodities contrary to expectations. Said Evans Gumede, a Luveve suburb resident:
_By compelling shops and service providers to peg the exchange rate at US$1:84 against the Zimbabwe dollar, everyone thought the prices of commodities were going to be reduced since the rate was now controlled._
_Instead, prices of most basic commodities in shops have been increased by very wide margins. What is also shocking is the prices have increased in both foreign currency and local currency._
Another consumer, Mildred Mlambo opined that the prices of most commodities had relatively stabilised before the introduction of the foreign currency measures