Speaker of Parliament , Advocate Jacob Mudenda, Zanu PF Buhera West legislator, Joseph Chinotimba and other legislators as well as economic commentators have urged Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe Governor Dr john Panonetsa Mangudya to arrest more perpetrators pricing commodities at black-market rates despite accessing foreign currency from the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe’s auction system.
Social media is awash with calls for the arrest of big companies that are getting foreign currency from the auction system but go on to peg prices based on the parallel market rates.
More people illegally dealing in foreign currency will soon be arrested and more financial institutions charged as Government cracks the whip against those driving and manipulating the black market despite the fact that Zimbabwe’s foreign currency inflows are more than adequate to buy all required imports and services.
Legislators and economic analysts attending a pre-budget seminar to mark the beginning of the 2022 National Budget cycle, urged Government to take decisive action against corporates pricing commodities at black-market rates despite accessing foreign currency from the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe’s auction system.
The local currency is being sold by dealers for as much $200 to US$1, more than double the official rate set by the auctions of US$1:$90,07. In his remarks, Speaker of the National Assembly Advocate Jacob Mudenda said the blackmarket would derail the attainment of Government targets captured in the National Development Strategy 1 (NDS1), .
“Of concern is the black-market premium, which is now twice the official exchange rate of US$1: $90,07. “The black market premiums are a major driver of inflationary developments in the country. This trend will derail the NDS1 objective of stabilising the foreign exchange rate and maintaining a low inflation of within the SADC macroeconomic convergence benchmark of 3 to 7 percent,” he said.
He thanked the Government for spearheading the fight against illegal foreign currency dealers. “Recently, there have been some 47 arrests of people involved and more will be arrested and I believe, including some banks. This will assist us to bring inflation down because as long as we don’t bring the black market down, inflation will continue to rise,” said Adv Mudenda.