While the Finance Minister of Zimbabwe and his colleagues like to pretend that things are fine and dandy in their realm, nothing can be further from the truth. The Zimbabwean economy is far from firing on all cylinders and each day we provide proof of this. Ironically even the government’s own statistic agencies seem to confirm the hell that ordinary Zimbabweans are going through.

According to the latest information from ZIMSTAT, the food poverty line for Zimbabwe is now at $10 537.00 ZWL. This means that an ordinary Zimbabwean will need to spend (and therefore have) at least this much in order to acquire basic foodstuffs including maize meal, cooking oil, salt and perhaps a little protein source. The Total Consumption Poverty Line now stands at $14 041.00 ZWL.

To give you an idea of the changes involved, according to ZIMSTAT in April the figures were as follows:

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  • The Food Poverty Datum Line (FPL) for one person in April 2022 was $8,366.00.
  • The Total Consumption Poverty Line (TCPL) for one person stood at $11,363.00 in April 2022.

Blame it all to the war in Ukraine

In between pretending that things are well, the government also loves blaming our woes on external factors while doing nothing to mitigate the impact of these external factors at the same time. Their favourite lates scapegoat has been the war in Ukraine. Just about anything wrong with the economy is being blamed on this war even though the government itself has done nothing to aid businesses and soften the blow. For example, despite promising that they would scrape the duty on petrol and diesel they haven’t. Despite introducing mandatory blending the price of fuel has also gone up presumably because ethanol is even more expensive than petrol itself. Which begs the question: why even introduce mandatory blending when it will not help?

Policy incoherence has been the order of the day. You have depression and yet you have the government raising and introducing new taxes such as the newly introduced withdrawal levy as well as IMT the 4% tax.