Zimbabwean government yesterday threatened to withdraw trading licences of all retailers pegging their prices exclusively in United States dollars.
Speaking during a post-Cabinet media briefing in Harare, Finance minister Mthuli Ncube said the government would not tolerate that kind of behaviour from retailers.
“We are quite aware that some retailers are putting stickers to say this product can only be bought in US dollars. I want to make it clear and categorical that it is totally unacceptable, and as a government, we will not allow that,” he said.
He also added that the government will withdraw licenses, and already has withdrawn the duty rebate licenses so as to allow companies to import.
“We will withdraw licenses, and already we have withdrawn the duty rebate licenses so as to allow companies to import. We will not allow this. They are breaking the law. The law says that citizens or anyone approaching a shop should be able to use currencies within the multi-currency regime. We absolutely cannot tolerate this kind of nonsense.” he said.
Meanwhile, retailers and wholesalers have been charging selected products such as sugar, milk, cooking oil and others in US dollars saying they were ordering the products from manufacturers in US dollars.
Retailers have been arguing that the Finance Ministry had given the nod for them to sell some of their products in US dollars given that they were not getting access to the foreign currency from the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe system.