Govt to suspend licences for businesses using black market rates

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Harare (New Ziana)-The government will order impromptu audits and suspend licences for businesses pricing goods using unofficial exchange rates, Finance Minister Mthuli Ncube said on Thursday.
The auction rate is pegged at ZWL87 to the United States dollar while the black market rate has risen to over ZWL170 against the greenback.
The official forex market has been struggling to meet demand, forcing businesses to source forex from the black market.
In a statement, Prof Ncube accused businesses of accessing forex on the central bank auction market but pricing goods using black market rates.
“Businesses who disregard the law and continue to price their goods on the parallel market rates will have their licences suspended.”
Prof Ncube said the Financial Intelligence Unit will also monitor and analyse financial transactions to expose illegal financial deals.
“The Zimbabwe Revenue Authority will be carrying out impromptu audits of corporate activities with a view of quantifying potential tax liabilities arising out of illegal foreign currency trading,” he said.
Prof Ncube said regulatory bodies such as the Public Accountants and Auditors board “will be working in a framework to impose appropriate financial and professional sanctions on members of the accounting, auditing professions who may be complicit in superintending over illicit affairs” by businesses.
“Members of the public are also strongly encouraged to report to the FIU and the National Economic Conduct Inspectorate, all business entities indirectly benchmarking pricing at parallel market exchange rates,” he said.
Recently, the central bank blacklisted 77 individuals for engaging in alleged money laundering through illegal foreign currency dealings using mobile and electronic platforms.
On Thursday, the central bank said it was investigating allegations of currency manipulation whereby businesses were pegging prices at more than twice the official exchange rate.
“Perpetrators shall be brought to book,” tweeted the central bank.
New Ziana

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