The country recorded a total of a total of 1,353 confirmed new COVDI‐19 cases in April, which is an increase compared to March (864) but still below the rate in February (2,723); while the death rate continued a downward trend—44 deaths were reported in April compared to 60 in March and 241 in February 2021.
The number of confirmed cumulative cases increased by 2% over the reporting period, from 37,288 cases including 1,538 deaths by 31 March 2021 to 38,433 cases including 1,576 deaths by 11 May 2021.
Annual inflation continued on a downward trend with inflation being pegged at 194% and food inflation at 217% in April. The Consumer Price Index increased by 1.58% in April compared to March 2021.
The 2021 Second Round National Crop and Livestock Assessment findings showed an improvement of about 199% in maize grain production, from about 907,628 MT during the 2019/20 season to 2.7 million MT in the 2020/21 season.
Total cereal ( maize, sorghum and millet) production was estimated at 3.1 million MT, which is more than 180% higher than the total annual human consumption requirement of about 1.8 million MT.
In ZWL terms, price of maize grain and maize meal prices decreased marginally by 5% and 2% respectively, and the price of sugar beans and cooking oil increased by 6% and 4% respectively. Given the prevailing economic conditions, prices of basic food commodities are likely to remain stable over the consumption period 2021/22.
In USD terms, prices increased by an average of 2%, with highest price increases reported for maize grain (5%) and sugar beans (2%), while that of maize meal and vegetable oil remained stable.
Supply of maize grain remained critically low, reported to be available in only 5% of monitored markets. Availability of maize meal decreased from 77% in March to 69% in April.
Availability of sugar beans decreased from 67% to 60% and that of cooking oil remained the same at 91%.
The price of diesel and petrol remained the same compared to the month of March 2021. Fuel prices are projected to remain stable until the end of the year following a similar trend observed in 2017/18.