Last week, Central Bank governor, Gideon Gono, announced that 1000 retailers and 200 wholesalers would now be allowed to sell goods in foreign currency, in a bid to improve availability of goods on the shelves.
In its first public attack on the RBZ’s introduction of foreign currency denominated shops, NECF said the central bank had erred in licencing shops instead of zones.
“Our vision was to create not 1000 shops – but zones,” Nhlanhla Masuku, NECF’s spokesperson said Tuesday.
“In Harare we had proposed Westgate, High Glen and Chitungwiza shopping centre and in Bulawayo, Nkulumane and Bulawayo Centre, to be ring fenced as forex shopping zones for ease of monitoring.”
Masuku said NECF is still lobbying for its programme to be implemented. Under NECF’s proposal, all shops at a mall would be allowed to sell their goods in foreign currency for ease of monitoring.
Masuku said the central bank’s initiative would make monitoring shops difficult.
He said NECF had mobilised resources to send teams to other countries on a fact finding mission and the body had done some regional bench marking on prices to remove the distortions.
“We are not happy with the implementation because it does not protect the consumer,” Masuku said.