Fuel shortages that began in late 2018 have followed us into the new decade. Motorists spend nights in fuel queues hoping to fill up. However the uber rich with access to foreign currency have another avenue that allows them to get fuel without the pain of waiting in line. The fuel black market.

Most dealers do their business via WhatsApp and some even offer to deliver to wherever it is you are if you buy in bulk. Strangely on the black market diesel is cheaper with dealers selling it for between US$1.05 and $1.10 while petrol is actually more expensive with these dealers asking for between US$1.20 and a $1.25. Some dealers also accept the bond equivalent while others accept the pump price equivalent in cash.

Authorities has also expressed outrage that some fuel stations are actually complicit when it comes to the illegal fuel trade. Some service stations are only selling a portion of what they get at designated prices while the rest is then sold in foreign currency right at the pump.

It is only those few designated service stations that can sell in foreign currency. They exclusively sell to diplomats and guests of the State.

All other service stations doing that are violating the law and we shall, through the Zimbabwe Energy Regulatory Authority (ZERA), enhance our surveillance system.

It has to be clear to every trade, service stations included, that the Zimbabwe dollar is the only legal tender applicable in our economy except those who fall in the category I have made reference to

Deputy Minister of Energy speaking to the Herald