Another month and the same old troubles that have hounded the Zimbabwean economy for the past few years are back. Tomorrow, Econet has announced that they are going to be hiking the prices of their SMS and data bundles again. It has been hardly a month since their latest hike but everyone who has been following the Zimbabwean economy will not be surprised by the announcement.

Dear Customers,

Please note, we will review our Voice, Data & SMS bundle prices effective, Tuesday 25 January 2022.

To access Voice and Data bundles dial *143#

To access SMS bundles dial *140#

Econet’s message to subscribers

Again most people will not be surprised by this. The black market rate, which most companies use for costing purposes because it’s the market that supplies them with foreign currency, has been on an upward climb again as it sped past the $220 ZWL and now hangs around the $240 ZWL point. Even the official rate has been climbing too albeit at a somewhat tame rate having risen to $112 ZWL from the $108 ZWL. Most people reckon the slow movement is because the official rate is semi-fixed despite the RBZ and the Minister of Finance claiming that it is freely floating.

It’s not just about the rate though. The cost of other essential inputs including labour and electricity has also gone up. It would make little sense to keep operating at loss-making prices. Another thing to note is that other operators including ZOL, NetOne and Telecel will follow Econet’s lead soon. If they don’t affect hikes this week expect them to do it early next week.