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Consumers to pay more

Itai Mushekwe

LOW income earners already reeling under economic hardships now have to dig deeper into their pockets after a drastic increase in the monthly consumer basket to nearly $7 m

illion, up from $6,1 million last month, a Consumer Council of Zimbabwe price survey has revealed.

Basic commodities for a family of six now cost about $2 860 477, while transport costs covering 21 working days will chew up $336 000.

Rentals, health and education, combined with detergents and clothing take up $4 097 375, giving a total of $6 957 852 in monthly expenditure.

However, analysts warned that Wednesday’s fuel price increase would affect the basket.

They estimated that a 10-15% adjustment in transport costs was inevitable. This would raise transport expenses to $1 million, resulting in the basket pushing close to $8 million.

Soaring prices and triple digit inflation have left consumer-buying power enfeebled, putting basic goods and services beyond the reach of many households.

Inflation in 2000 stood at 55,9% and rose to 71% the following year. It rose to over 600% in January last year before starting a downward trend for most of the year. It was nearly 130% in March this year before reversing the trend to around 254,8% now.

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