Zimbabwe: Govt secures loan for fuel

JOHANNESBURG, 20 January (IRIN) - The government of Zimbabwe has secured a US $10 million revolving loan from the Arab Bank for Economic Development in Africa which it will use to buy desperately needed fuel.
For several months Zimbabwe's pumps have been running dry due to uncertainty over a deal with Libyan company Tamoil and a severe foreign currency shortage, leaving motorists queuing for hours to buy rationed supplies.

"It will definitely go some way towards helping the situation," Edward Mamutse, senior press secretary in the Department of Information told IRIN on Monday.

Many motorists were forced to abandon their vehicles when their fuel ran out and workers, unable to afford the corresponding rise in the cost of public transport, were forced to wake up extremely early to walk long distances to reach work on time.

It was not clear how long it would take for the effect of the loan to filter down to the fuel pumps. "The shortage has been so acute that it will take some time to come back to normal," Mamutse said.


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