Zimbabwe is still constrained in terms of foreign currency. File Photo: IOL

HARARE – Zimbabwean Energy and Power Development Minister Joram Gumbo on Wednesday, said fuel suppliers were demanding upfront payments before they could release the fuel into the market.

“The country is still constrained in terms of foreign currency, while there are many competing demands on the available foreign currency,” he said, adding fuel was available at Msasa, Feruka and Mabvuku depots, but could only be collected after payment of the required foreign currency.

The Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe provided foreign currency to fuel importers every week, usually on Tuesdays, since local dealers are expected to pay cash upfront.

The shortages come despite recent reports that government had struck a deal with business magnate Kudakwashe Tagwireyi’s Sakunda Holdings for the supply of 100 million litres of fuel. 

Sakunda Holdings is in a 51/49 percent joint venture with Singapore-based Trafigura International.

In October, government announced it was in talks with Sakunda for a one billion litre deal of fuel, which would have beefed supplies for up to April 2020, with payment modalities being ironed out.

African News Agency (ANA)