rand coins.jpgGovernment is set to invoke a new set of foreign exchange regulations which are expected to stamp out irregular practices by retailers who are shortchanging customers especially in issuing change.


The regulations come as government’s response to calls by consumers that they are being short changed by retailers by forcing them to take commodities they do not require to compensate for change citing the unavailability of coins.


The new set of regulations to stamp out such malpractices will be announced in the 2011 budget.


Despite pleas for retailers to buy rand coins imported from South Africa in order to facilitate the provision of change in monetary transactions, the business sector has not acted accordingly.


Consumers who are feeling the pinch said the government should urgently intervene.

“It is so painful that retailers are ripping us off by not giving us change. We are forced to buy sweets and this is making us unable to save money. We can not work this way, the government should address this problem sooner than later if ever it is serious with protecting our rights,” said one consumer.


Submissions from the retailing sector to the government ahead of the 2011 budget presentation have shown that while retailers are wiling to access the coins from the banks, the prevailing exchange rates between the US dollar and the South Africa Rand is unfavorable. 


The retailers argue that buying the rand coins from banks under the current rate will render them non profitable.


Information from the Bankers Association of Zimbabwe shows that  financial institutions have imported rand coins from South Africa with a view of easing the transaction problems following the change from the use of the local currency to multiple currencies in February last year.