Kuda Bwititi, Harare Bureau
FINANCE and Economic Development Minister Professor Mthuli Ncube has said the price shocks that were recently experienced by the market are temporary as the economy adjusts to the new policies, which he has described as “bitter medicine” that will help the economy stabilise.
Prof Ncube said consumers and retailers resorting to panic buying and speculative activities are likely to incur heavy losses.
In an interview from Bali, Indonesia, where he was attending the IMF and World Bank meetings, Prof Ncube said there is a need for the market to be patient.
“Ordinary Zimbabweans should not go into panic buying of goods and commodities, as prices will drop and they will lose money. Likewise, wholesalers and retailers should not hoard goods in anticipation of obtaining higher prices in future. They will incur losses. I urge everyone to be patient. We will turn around the fundamentals of the economy through various measures contained in the Transitional Stabilisation Programme,” he said.
The TSP is a recently adopted economic blueprint that will guide the economy through December 2020. Prof Ncube said while the Intermediated Money Transfer Tax of two cents per every dollar is painful, it is necessary to achieve sustainable economic growth.
“The interventions that I have put in place are designed to restore fiscal equilibrium and general macro-economic and monetary sector stability. This will then create the right environment for growth. The price shocks are temporary but inflation will stabilise as the markets finds equilibrium again.
“Sometimes bitter medicine causes the patient some discomfort as they swallow it. As a country, we have to take the pain early enough so that by year two of the reform agenda, we will have completed the bulk of reforms enunciated in the Transitional Stabilisation Programme.”