RETAILERS have called on mobile money service providers to lower transaction charges so as to accommodate more consumers, particularly in rural areas.
BY MTHANDAZO NYONI
Confederation of Zimbabwe Retailers (CZR) chairperson, Denford Mutashu, told Southern Eye that mobile money transfer services charges were too high for many people and should be lowered.
“It’s quite expensive to transact using mobile money,” he said.
“Charges are still beyond the reach of the struggling consumers.
“We call upon mobile money transfer services to lower their charges.”
Mutashu said even though consumers have embraced cashless transactions, there was still a significant need for cash in the economy, particularly in rural areas, where people did not have access to plastic money.
There are three mobile money transfer services in Zimbabwe which are Econet’s EcoCash, Telecel’s Telecash and NetOne’s OneWallet.
Mutashu said 90% of products in the country’s supermarkets are manufactured locally, while 10% are imports due to government’s import restrictions.
“Ninety percent of the products that you find in supermarket shelves are manufactured locally,” he claimed.
“Imports account for only 10%. This is as a result of Statutory Instrument (SI) 64 of 2016 and a lot of companies have resurrected.”
The government last year gazetted SI 64 of 2016, which removed goods that have local equivalents from the open general import licence.
Mutashu, however, said the sector was still saddled by delays in the payment of raw materials that need to be imported.
“We are really calling for the government to expedite foreign payments,” he said.
Mutashu implored the government to keep on reforming the ease of doing business in the country to encourage production.