Impacts of COVID-19 Regulatory Measures on Small-scale and Informal Trade in Zimbabwe

19th May 2020
Author: Roz Price

This report provides a snapshot of the current and recent COVID-19 measures in place in Zimbabwe and how these have impacted on small-scale and informal domestic and cross-border traders. The final section provides some brief information on some of the Southern African Development Community (SADC) states’ reactions to COVID-19, especially about protecting or supporting the economic recovery of the informal sector. The information has been presented for Botswana, Malawi, Mozambique, Namibia, South Africa and Zambia. As of 19 May 2020, Zimbabwe has 46 confirmed cases of COVID-19 and 4 deaths. A national lockdown has been put in place since 30 March 2020; this was extended indefinitely on 16 May 2020, though the restrictions will be reviewed every two weeks. The informal economy is very important in Zimbabwe. The national lockdown has confined millions of people reliant on informal economic activities to their homes and has negatively impacted the informal economy. To improve the situation, some pragmatic measures must be put in place.

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Suggested Citation

Price, R.A. (2020). Impacts of COVID-19 regulatory measures on small-scale and informal trade in Zimbabwe. K4D Helpdesk Report 815-816. Brighton, UK: Institute of Development Studies.


19th May 2020


Continent: Africa

Country: Botswana, Malawi, Mozambique, Zimbabwe