THE price of bread may go up anytime soon, weeks after it was reduced, following an introduction of a 20% import duty on wheat.
BY MTHANDAZO NYONI
A report released by the Livestock and Meat Advisory Council said the issue of tax on imported wheat was discussed during a recent Confederation of Zimbabwe Industries (CZI) and Zimbabwe Revenue Authority (Zimra) meeting. The meeting noted that the tax was a stumbling block towards the bread industry’s revival.
National Bakers’ Association of Zimbabwe president Givemore Mesoemvura indicated that the 20% levy on wheat imports would have a negative impact on the baking industry.
“If the price of wheat goes up, it has an impact on the price of flour which in turn has an impact on the price of bread,” Mesoemvura said.
“Our effort at the moment is to lower the price of bread, bring it to levels where retailers can just mark it up 10% and charge below a dollar, within 80c and 95 cents.
“This is what we are trying to drive at, but as long as there is a levy imposed on wheat, then obviously those efforts will come to none.”
Since the adoption of the multi-currency regime in 2009, a standard loaf of bread has been selling at $1 owing to the unavailability of smaller denominations for change.
It was reduced by 10% recently, following the introduction of bond coins in denominations of one, five, 10 and 25 cents valued at par with US cents.
The coins were meant to address the price distortions.