Business

Fuel prices will fall: Zera

ZIMBABWE Energy Regulatory Authority (Zera) acting chief executive officer Eddington Mazambani says the fall in global crude oil prices will likely cause local prices to fall. BY TATIRA ZWINOIRA Due to uncertainty around the global COVID-19 pandemic, demand for oil is falling and is doing so rapidly to a point where crude oil prices fell below zero for the first time in history on Monday. At the time of writing, the global crude oil price was US$26,06 per barrel. However, historically, this has hardly translated to a reduction in local prices of fuel while other markets regionally have seen downward movements. “I cannot pre-empt the final price for May 2020, we will use the FOB (free on board) of refined fuel up to end of April 2020 and any other considerations from government and other st...

40 000 mine workers to undergo COVID-19 testing

PRESIDENT Emmerson Mnangagwa says mines are to resume operations during an extended lockdown, a plan that would need at least 40 000 mine workers to be immediately screened and tested for COVID-19. On Sunday, Mnangagwa announced that Zimbabwe is to remain under lockdown for a further 14 days, although he will allow mines and manufacturers to resume some operations. “Government is acutely aware of the need to keep the economy running, albeit at subdued levels. With this objective in mind, government has decided to allow the mining sector to resume or scale up operations, even then within parameters set by the WHO regarding social distancing and other public health safety measures,” Mnangagwa said in a live address. “I have now directed the ministries of Health and Child Care and that of Min...

Zimbabwe’s Currency Plans Upended as It Fights on Two Fronts

The fallout from the coronavirus pandemic has upended Zimbabwe’s plans to enforce the use of its own currency and left it scrambling to find money to tackle twin crises of economic collapse and famine. A global slump spurred by the outbreak of the virus has come with the southern African nation’s economy in its worst state since at least 2008. Already trying to raise $400 million to buy grain after the most-severe drought in 40 years threatened to leave half of its people without enough food, it now needs another $220 million to deal with the impact of Covid-19, according to Finance Minister Mthuli Ncube. On the eve of major protests, which were called by the main opposition party over plunging living standards, Ncube said the country would establish a Monetary Policy Committee within a mo...

RBZ completes validation of blocked funds

THE Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe (RBZ) says it has completed the validation of foreign exchange applications submitted under the blocked funds framework. BY FIDELITY MHLANGA Blocked funds are cash flows generated by a foreign project that cannot be immediately repatriated to the parent firm because of capital flow restrictions imposed by the host government.. “The Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe (the Bank) wishes to advise the public that the process of validation of foreign exchange applications submitted under the blocked funds framework announced in the monetary policy statement on February 22, 2019 has been completed. For all approved blocked funds transactions, the respective local currency should be transferred to the Bank by April 30, 2020 through normal banking channels,” RBZ governor John Ma...

Community Response to COVID 19 Measures

Food distribution in the Mutoko rural area of Zimbabwe in March.Credit…Jekesai Njikizana/Agence France-Presse — Getty Images 4 human rights issues are captured in this report: Access to Information, Politicisation of Food Aid, Community Access to Health Facilities, and tragically, community interaction with security forces with at least 2 people allegedly killed by the security services. We highlight some clear recommendations and bring out community voices through our special feature in the report: ZimRights Audible. You will be able to interact with messages from community leaders who are leading their communities in the fight against COVID 19. You can listen to victims and survivors of police brutality. You can also take action. Download the report here. Post published in: Agricult...

Govt sets maize producer price at $12 329/t

GOVERNMENT has reviewed upwards the producer prices for maize, traditional grains and soyabeans for the 2020/21 marketing season with the effect from April 1, 2020. — BY TAFADZWA MHLANGA The new price for maize was pegged at $12 329, traditional grains at $12 865 while the soyabeans price will be $17 211 per metric tonne. In a letter directed to Grain Marketing Board manager Rockie Mutenha, Lands secretary John Basera said Cabinet had approved the adjustments. “Cabinet approved reviewing of floor producer prices for maize, traditional grains and soya beans for the 2020/2021 marketing season. In the same spirit, you are directed to review these prices in line with the approved prices below; maize $12 329,73/MT; traditional grains $12 865,79/MT and soyabeans $17 211,74/MT,” Basera said. “The...

‘Zimdollar value plunges 580%’

THE Zimbabwe dollar has devalued by over 580% since February 2019 to date, United States Agency for International Development food security arm, FEWS NET, has said. BY TATIRA ZWINOIRA Due to inadequate foreign currency, commodity or market confidence backing it, the Zimdollar has continued to depreciate rapidly leading to hyperinflation that has led to a plethora of macro-economic challenges. So dire is the situation caused by the devaluing Zimdollar that according to a leaked draft document last week, titled Macro-economic Policy Measures to Support 5-year De-dollarisation Strategy, which the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe said was a working document yet to be discussed by both the central bank and government, there are plans to use foreign currency interchangeably with the Zimdollar until 2022...

The interview with Vaka CEO

Can you tell me about yourself and your position at your company? I am Tapiwa Admire Kundoro, I am the founder and CEO of Vaka Building Materials and Hardware. I am married to Thandi and father to a 6-year-old boy called Tawona. Iam also a pastor in the United Kingdom in Norwich where I live. What is Vaka and what do you do as a company? Vaka is an online hardware and building materials supplier. We are a one stop building materials supplier for Zimbabweans at home and in the diaspora. Instead of customers spending the whole day going to 20 different building suppliers they can just contact Vaka in the comfort of their office or home and get all their materials. We offer customers convenience of buying all their building materials in one place. What pushed you to start Vaka? Having lived i...

ZSE registers OMSEC as first market maker

THE Zimbabwe Stock Exchange (ZSE) has announced the registration of Old Mutual Securities (Pvt) Limited (OMSEC) as the first market maker on the ZSE. Equity Axis NewsOMSEC has been approved as a market maker for an Exchange Traded Fund (ETF) which is anticipated to list in due course. The registration of OMSEC is in accordance with the ZSE Market Making Rules and was with effect from April 16, 2020. As part of efforts to widen investment choices, the ZSE in 2019 came up with the initiative to introduce ETFs. The ETFs are meant to be part of a threefold mandate which includes growing the exchange in terms of new products, listings, investors and expanding ZSE’s reach and influence, improving stakeholder relations and getting fundamentals right through regulatory processes and supporting act...

Mobile Operator Group dragging MNOs into investigation

After the first published article investigating the West African Mobile Group Operator, more people have come forward to shed light on this case. We have received further details from inside sources about the agreement breach between a renowned Service Provider and Operator under the Mobile Group Operator involved in this dispute. Even though the breach was caused by the Operator Group, the West African Operator was left to face the discord alone. As such, the Service Provider has no other option but to open a legal case with the Operator to reserve their rights. The breach undermines a number of points in the contract between Service Provider and Operator including, the preferential selling rate agreement. One of the seniors working for the Service Provider, who asked to speak anonym...

Zimbabwe Banks Urge Periodic Devaluation of Pegged Dollar Rate

The Bankers Association of Zimbabwe wants the central bank to help stabilize foreign-exchange markets through a “periodic” devaluation of the rate to better reflect the country’s economy, according to a letter sent to the central bank and seen by Bloomberg. The Zimbabwe dollar was pegged at 25 to the greenback on March 26, while the black-market rate for the U.S. currency can be as much as double that. The Zimbabwean

Zimbabwe to start phasing out use of US dollars at the end of 2022

The move falls under measures put in place to support Zimbabwe’s five-year de-dollarisation strategy up leading up to the year 2024, seen by Fin24. The southern African country recently reintroduced the use of foreign currency for local transactions, barely a year after outlawing its use in favour of the Zimbabwe dollar. The decision to allow the use of foreign currency for local transactions, despite the earlier ban, was meant to ease the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic that has ravaged economies across the globe. While for the remainder of this year and the following two years till 2022, institutions and individuals will be allowed to pay for goods and services in local Zimbabwe currency or foreign currency. In 2023, all goods and services in Zimbabwe will be “chargeable in local currenc...