Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe (RBZ) Governor Dr John Mangudya says fuel shortages are caused by structural challenges such as heavy reliance on imports, debt overhang, fuel price hikes and low production.
The RBZ boss also revealed that the country is using US$80 million per month to purchase fuel.
Dr Mangudya made the explanation while appearing before the Parliamentary Portfolio Committee on Mines and Energy today.
The portfolio committee chairperson Mr Themba Mliswa quizzed the RBZ Governor on why government is buying high end expensive cars for Ministers when the country has such structural challenges and not promoting local industry such as Willovale Mazda Motor Industries.
The Governor said the fuel situation is under control and called for the promulgation of a law that heavily punishes people who peddle falsehoods to the effect that the country is facing acute shortages of the commodity as their the aim is to cause alarm and despondency in the country.
Fuel suppliers, among them Mr Kudakwashe Tagwirei and Mr Ronan Beacond blamed the challenges in fuel supply on foreign currency shortages.
On the question of the fuel pricing, Zimbabwe Energy Regulatory Authority (ZERA) CEO, Engineer Gloria Magombo said they regularly monitor that fuel companies are complying with the set prices
The committee also queried why fuel companies demand cash and shun plastic money which could help to preserve the country’s foreign currency.