Dual pricing offenders to face financial penalties

By ZBC Reporter

BUSINESSES that fail to comply with a directive to charge and display prices in Zimbabwe dollars and United States dollars respectively using the ruling exchange rate, will now face penalties in line with regulations gazetted this Friday.

The permission by regulatory authorities during the start of the lockdown for businesses to accept payments in foreign currency while still being required to accept payments in local currency has seen some retailers allegedly converting locally quoted prices at higher rates than the official levels.

A Statutory Instrument 185 of 2020 gazetted this Friday is now directing businesses to charge and display prices in United States dollar and Zimbabwe dollar at the ruling exchange rates with those failing facing penalties.

Businessman Dr Emmanuel Fundira had this to say on the impact of the new regulations.

“It will have its own share of impact but that is the only way to go let us wait and see what will happen,” he said.

Pan African Chamber of Commerce board member Mr Langton Mabhanga says the new regulations are likely to remove pricing distortions.

“It is all about what they intend to achieve given the current situation whereby we cannot continue to have price differentials,” he noted.

Confederation of Zimbabwe Retailers president Mr Denford Mutashu says retailers should obey the regulations.

“We need to just comply although we also have our own challenges that we think should be addressed,” he said.

The government has set out civil penalties that will be charged to would-be offenders, with the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe Governor Dr John Mangudya also releasing a statement backing the latest developments as a move to tighten screws on the use of foreign currency.

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