Zimbabwe to adopt price control on commodities

According to prices displayed by most shops, the price of bread nearly doubled on Tuesday

Zimbabwe plans to regulate prices of essential commodities, to check the activities of businesses making over the board profit.

According to prices displayed by most shops, the price of bread nearly doubled on Tuesday, at RTGS$3.50 a loaf, up from RTGS$1.80 on Monday.

Prices for the staple maize meal also went up, with a 10kg bag now costing an average RTGS$11.85, up from RTGS$9,20.

This is a major concern for citizens already struggling with a weakening currency and rising prices for basic goods.

President Mnangagwa says the government is determined to restore buying power to all citizens, maintaining that although he was against the regulation of prices, businesses had to have a human face when making their profits.

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The Grain Millers Association and the National Bakers’ Association have accused the government of triggering the latest round of price hikes by raising the producer price of maize from RTGS$390 a ton, to RTGS$726, while wheat was increased from RTGS$630 to RTGS$1.089.69.

Addendum: RTGS is not a currency. In February, the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe (RBZ) floated the local reference currency, dubbed RTGS dollar, at 2.5 to 1 US dollar after abandoning the 1:1 fixed rate. The rate has steadily gone up to slightly above three RTGS dollars per US dollar while on the black market the rate is between 4.1 and 5,2 this week.Zimbabwe has been without a currency of its own since it adopted the multiple currency system during the Government of National Unity in 2009.

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