Harare — On Wednesday, Zimbabwe’s finance minister accused local businesses of profiteering for linking price increases of basic goods to exchange rate movements of a new transitional currency. Since the RTGS dollar was introduced in February, prices of staples including sugar, cooking oil and rice have risen as much as 60%, squeezing already hard-pressed consumers and fueling resentment against President Emmerson Mnangagwa’s government. The RTGS launched at 2.5 to the US dollar on February 22 but now trades at about 4.3 on the black market. Price changes should be determined by inflation trends, finance minister Mthuli Ncube said, adding that month-on-month inflation was slowing. “It is actually bad economics to link price increases to the exchange rate. That’s not how you do it, it is profiteering,” Mthuli told reporters. The country dumped its hyperinflation-hit local currency in 2009 and replaced it with the US dollar, which has been in short supply since 2016. That has, in turn...

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