A social and economic justice group, Zimbabwe Coalition on Debt and Development (ZIMCODD) in a statement on the economic crisis in the country said that the government should match oil price increase with wage increment.
The government increased fuel price to over $3.00 per liter this year.
“While the government effected an increase in fuel price by over 100%, they proposed a paltry $41 salary increment for civil servants and this disparity is a serious cause for concern,” ZIMCODD said.
“The effects of an upward movement in fuel tariffs on the whole economy cannot be overemphasized.”
The justice group also said the government needs to review the 2% tax threshold, which was put in place by the Finance Ministry Professor Mthuli Ncube, who has plans to widen the tax base.
“Fuel price hikes come on top of the 2% tax on electronic transactions,” ZIMCOOD said.
“Whilst progressive taxation is necessary, there is need to review the 2% tax which continually burden the already overtaxed citizens especially the unemployed and underpaid.”
“The tax threshold must therefore be raised to a reasonable minimum taking into account the poverty datum line.” ZIMCODD goes on.
The statement on the economic crisis in Zimbabwe also raised the issue of policy clarity and consistency.
“The recently announced fuel pricing model (different prices in Bond Note and USD) defeats the supposed 1:1 parity between US Dollar and Bond Note,” ZIMCODD explained. “Such policy inconsistency perpetuates market distortions”
“The government must, therefore, resolve the currency issue once and for all to arrest the multi-tier pricing system.”
Products are priced at different costs under the multi-tier system, costing less using the US Dollar and expensive when using mobile money.
The Debt and Development Coalition also said the government must consider arrest on arbitrage practices on the black market.
“Citizens are wary of inaction by government regarding arbitrage practices in fuel buying and selling on the black market and in this regard, the government should take appropriate action and protect citizens against such acts of economic sabotage,” ZIMCODD said.