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Supermarkets start trading in forex

by Staff reporter
10 Apr 2020 at 07:57hrs | Views
SUPERMARKETS, food outlets and fresh produce dealers have started selling their goods in foreign currency in line with Government's directive allowing them to use free funds for domestic transactions.

Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe (RBZ) Governor, Dr John Mangudya, recently announced that individuals and businesses can now trade freely in forex and fixed the exchange rate at US$1:ZW$25. He said the measure was meant to assist the country in dealing with the financial vulnerabilities caused by the Covid-19 pandemic.

In a snap survey around the Central Business District (CBD) yesterday retailers like TM Pick n Pay and OK had started trading in forex and were only accepting US$ using the interbank rate.

Choppies Supermarkets around town were not accepting any forex with staff at the supermarket saying they had not been given the greenlight by their employers.

"We are still to get communication from our bosses on when we can start selling in forex and until we receive such communication we will be selling only in Zimbabwean dollars," said a worker who requested anonymity.

Greens Supermarket is selling in forex and since Monday the US$ had been pegged at $35, Rand at $1.90 and Pula at $2.80. This news crew observed that some fruit and vegetable suppliers at the Bulawayo market, which had been closed when the lockdown came into effect last week on Monday but reopened on Tuesday following a directive by President Mnangagwa, were also accepting foreign currency.

As the interbank rate is being used, vendors complained that the move affects them as they have no access to forex.

"Where do they expect us to get the foreign currency when our customers are buying using the local currency. "In the communities where we sell our produce people will think we are swindling them if we sell in forex. So, these suppliers should stop the selling in foreign currency," said a vendor from Nkulumane 5 Mrs Simangaliso Mkomo.

In Cowdray Park, TM Pick and Pay and surrounding shops are accepting foreign currency. Food outlets and shebeens have also joined the trend. The news crew observed that a 1,25litre of Chibuku Super is now going for US$1 at one of the popular shebeens in the high density suburbs.

Source - the herald