Retailers Decry Speculative Sugar Pricing Amidst Supply Chain Concerns

By Staff Reporter

The Confederation of Zimbabwe Retailers (CZR) has raised alarm over the soaring prices of sugar on the local market, attributing the surge to speculative pricing practices.

Despite the recommended retail price (RRP) range set between US$2.60 (ZiG 33.75) to US$2.80 (ZiG 37.80) for a 2kg pack of both brown and white sugar, consumers are currently facing exorbitant costs, with prices hitting as high as US$4.00 (ZiG 54) per 2kg.

CZR president Denford Mutashu expressed deep concern over the widening gap between the RRP and the actual prices being charged to consumers.

“It is disheartening to witness such blatant disregard for fair pricing practices, especially when the supplier’s prices remain stable,” Mutashu remarked.

Furthermore, CZR highlighted the challenges faced by retailers and wholesalers in accessing sugar supplies from Zimbabwe Sugar Sales (ZSS), leading to a reliance on informal channels.

This dependence on informal sources has contributed to the proliferation of arbitrage pricing in the market, exacerbating the pricing disparity.

In response to these issues, CZR has initiated discussions with ZSS to streamline the supply chain and address delivery bottlenecks, with the aim of stabilizing supply into formal retail and wholesale channels.

Mutashu urged regulatory authorities, including the Zimbabwe Republic Police (ZRP) Licensing Inspectorate and the RBZ Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU), to take decisive action against unscrupulous traders flouting RRP regulations.

“Enforcement of fair pricing practices is essential to safeguarding consumer interests and promoting a sustainable business environment,” Mutashu said

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