The Zimbabwe government has ordered fuel dealers to reduce prices immediately by between 7 and 14 percent, less than 24 hours after cutting excise duty on fuel imports in a move aimed at lowering production costs.
Energy Minister Simon Khaya Moyo denied that the move also heralds the return of price controls, saying going forward, prices will follow international trends.
Khaya Moyo told journalists that petrol must now retail at $1.35 per litre, with diesel and paraffin prices set at $1.23 and $1.17 respectively.
“I expect and trust that this important decision by the government shall be implemented by all concerned parties. I therefore expect nothing less than immediate compliance,” said Khaya Moyo.
Excise duty on petrol has been reduced by 6.5 cents per litre from 45 cents to 38.5 cents, while importers of diesel and paraffin will enjoy a reduction of 7 cents from 40 cents per litre to 33 cents per litre.
Petrol prices in Zimbabwe have ranged between $1.40 and $1.56 per litre, with diesel costing between $1.30 and $1.33 per litre.
The Confederation of Zimbabwe Industries (CZI) said it expects prices to fall in line with the lower cost of fuel, with beef coming down by up to 20 percent.
“The industry shall, therefore, incorporate this fuel price reduction into its pricing structures, which will result in the prices of some basic commodities falling by ranges of 1 percent to 5 percent,” its president, Sifelani Jabangwe told journalists.
“The overall consumer price index is therefore inclined to fall further from the 1.2 percent increment experienced over the 2016-17 period. Out of the 15 monitored basic commodities, prices of economy beef for example are expected to fall by an average of 10 percent to 20 percent.”
Zimbabwe solely relies on fuel imports and prior to the reduction, diesel and petrol were charged taxes and levies amounting to 0.50 cents and 0.63 cents respectively, making them the most expensive in the region. – The Source