By Alois Vinga
LISTED agro-industrial group, CFI Holdings, has seen revenue growing by 195%, amid calls for continued government- industry dialogue in order to safeguard the achievements attained since the introduction of the Foreign Exchange Auction system.
The numerous twists and turns experienced in the Zimbabwean economy on the back of the reform agenda has triggered effects and speculation among key stakeholders.
As an intervention strategy, relevant government departments alongside other authorities have continuously engaged business member organisations in a bid to find a lasting solution on matters including exchange rates, foreign currency availability and inflation among others.
Presenting a trading update for the quarter ended June 30 2022, CFI company secretary, Panganayi Hare, said dialogue is the only way key economic stakeholders can minimize the impacts of local and global inflation headwinds.
He expressed optimism that steep exchange rate disparities in the local market will characterise the trading environment in the short term.
“This is expected to depress disposable income and spending to year-end, save for mining and construction sectors of the economy, where improvements are expected.
“The Group hopes that collaborative dialogue between Government, industry and other stakeholders will be maintained in order to safeguard business confidence and the significant economic achievements attained since the introduction of the auction system,” he said.
Meanwhile, during the period, CFI sales volumes for the retail division’s key revenue drivers during the quarter were behind the same period last year, with the late start to the 2021/22 rainy season and the lower harvests suppressing demand for agricultural inputs.
Demand for fertilisers, which traditionally peak during the tobacco marketing season, was also constrained by the significant real price increases for the commodity.
Cement sales for the quarter were also adversely affected by supply constraints.
Group Inflation-adjusted revenues grew by 21, 8% to ZW$6, 54 billion from ZW$5, 34 billion in the prior year quarter. Historical revenues for the quarter grew by 195% to ZW$5, 29 billion in the current quarter from ZW$1, 79 billion in the comparative prior year quarter.
“Despite the challenges, CFI remains optimistic of consolidating its fortunes amidst the evolving challenges in the operating environment and maintaining its focus on sustaining business continuity in the obtaining environment,” added Hare.