PRESIDENT Emmerson Mnangagwa has condemned unjustified price hikes by some business dealers, saying such actions cannot be allowed to continue. Addressing delegates attending the 6th Buy Zimbabwe Annual Awards at a Harare hotel last night, President Mnangagwa said "no to such counter-economic practices". He said business should complement Government efforts to revive the economy by refraining from counter-productive measures like selling cash and multi-tier pricing systems. "Government notes with concern the existence of a multi-tier pricing system and this cannot go unabated," he said.
"We need to examine our modus operandi as captains of industry and commerce if we are ever going to move forward. There are some dealers, suppliers and business owners who are in the habit of increasing prices willy-nilly without proper justification, let me hasten to say my Government says no to such counter-economic practices.
"I urge our wholesalers and retailers, as we approach this festive season, to refrain from profiteering by charging unscrupulous prices and never to put measures that may derail our efforts for a quick turnaround of the economy. Government wants to protect the rights of the consumers and ensure that its citizenry is not short changed or duped by unscrupulous dealers. Our people need a decent festive season where they can make and enjoy their holidays."
President Mnangagwa said Government was also implementing sweeping measures to address the prevailing liquidity crunch. He said such measures included import management strategies and export expansionary policies in line the with the recent budget statement by Finance and Economic Planning Minister Cde Patrick Chinamasa. We need to keep money inside the country to avert the liquidity crisis and reduce company closures in the context of limited foreign direct investment," said President Mnangagwa.
"The cash shortages have negatively impacted on effective demand. Government is doing all in its power to address the anomaly, among other things the proposed domestic procurement index which will require retailers to cut down on imports and increase purchases of local products." President Mnangagwa reiterated that individuals and corporates who illegally extenalised funds and assets must to return them before by end of the three month moratorium with no questions and or charges leveled against them.
For those who might choose to ignore his call he warned that: "I think you all know my background." President Mnangagwa also spoke highly on industrialisation saying Government was doing everything to support the local industry. "Government is doing everything possible to revive the economy through enactment of laws and policies that support local producers and linking them to retailers, consumers and other relevant stakeholders.
"Amongst some of these measures are the Cotton Pricing Model, Cotton to Clothing Value Chain, Industrial Development Fund, Leather and Leather Products Strategy and the National Competitiveness Bill. Buy Zimbabwe efforts through its annual Buy Zimbabwe Awards should be should be applauded. The campaign seeks to actively promote home-grown products for the domestic and global markets.
"I also urge the relevant stakeholders and individuals to complement Government strides than engaging in illegal counter measures such as cash selling, cash hoarding, multi-tier pricing, extra commission pricing, forex dealing, funds externalisation and other money laundering activities." President Mnangagwa said Zimbabwe should now reclaim its position as the jewel of Africa and its economic growth should be hinged on the ability to meet global standards.
The Buy Zimbabwe Awards chairman Sebastain Zuze said the awards were benchmarked on four key aspects that include economic growth, job creation, capability to produce quality products and sustainability of operations. Some of the companies that walked away with the prestigious awards include Nestle Zimbabwe, Nyaradzo Group, Zimplats and World Gas, among others.