City of Harare to bill in forex
Harare (New Ziana) –The Harare City Council will, stating from July this year, be billing residents and ratepayers for services in foreign currency as it seeks to preserve value against exchange rate volatilities.
In a notice, the local authority also advised residents and other stakeholders that all outstanding arrears as at June 30 will be converted to USD using the prevailing exchange rate.
The local authority will accept payments in either USD or the local currency converted at the prevailing official exchange rate on the date of payment.
“All ratepayers (debtors) accounts will be maintained in USD and all billing will be done in USD based on approved USD tariffs in the 2023 budget. The need to preserve value against exchange rate losses has necessitated this move,” read part of the notice.
The country has been experiencing exchange control volatility which has seen the official rate shoot to $6 900 from $930 in March this year, while the parallel rate is hovering around $10 000 to the dollar.
This has seen prices of goods and services going haywire while workers’ salaries denominated in the local currency have been rendered useless and leading government this week to demand an urgent meeting with the Ministry of Public Service, Labour and Social Welfare to review public sector salaries.
The exchange rate has recently stabilized following measures taken by monetary authorities with the local currency registering slight gains against the USD this week to settle at about $6 300 and is expected to continue posting further gains going forward.
This is due to the prevailing tight liquidity situation as authorities enforce measures to anchor stability of the local currency.