RBZ finalizes production of new ZiG currency; bank notes and coins ready for launch


HARARE—The Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe (RBZ) has announced the completion of printing and minting of the new Zimbabwe Gold (ZiG) banknotes and coins, set to be introduced into the market on Tuesday next week.

RBZ says new currency ZiG bank notes and coins now ready for launch
‘Stable currency’ ... RBZ Governor John Mushayavanhu says the central bank has completed the printing and minting of ZiG bank notes and coins.

RBZ Governor John Mushayavanhu, in an interview with The Sunday Mail, that the new currency denominations were produced locally and are backed by a combination of gold, precious minerals, and foreign currency reserves. 

He assured that the central bank has produced enough notes and coins to meet market needs.

The delay in the rollout of physical notes and coins was to allow for comprehensive public education campaigns, ensuring stakeholders understand and embrace the new currency. 

ZiG notes, ranging from ZiG1 to ZiG200, will be gradually introduced into the market, along with half ZiG and quarter ZiG coins.

Dr Mushayavanhu stated that the new currency was introduced on April 5, with all Zimbabwe dollar balances converted into ZiG. The next stage, introducing the physical notes and coins, is set for April 30.

“The new currency has already been introduced. It was introduced on April 5 when we announced the Monetary Policy Statement. On that day, we converted all our Zimbabwe dollar balances into ZiG,” Mushayavanhu said. 

“So, if you go to your bank today, you will find that your balance has been converted to ZiG. The next stage is now to introduce the notes and coins.

“And these are the ones that are going to be introduced on April 30. The money has already been printed. It is there.”

The central bank is currently conducting extensive educational campaigns to raise awareness about the new currency's features. 

The aim is to prevent potential fraud with fake notes and coins. 

The bank is working closely with the Ministry of Information, Publicity and Broadcasting Services to publicise the new currency nationwide.

Mushayavanhu described ZiG as a “stable currency” that has been gaining value since its introduction. 

Currently, an ounce of gold is trading at US$2,400 on the London Bullion Market Association, with prices expected to continue rising.

He emphasized that measures in the Monetary Policy Statement will ensure inflation remains under control. 

Complementary measures by the Treasury, such as requiring half of corporate taxes to be paid in the local unit, are expected to drive up demand for ZiG.

“If the exchange rate for ZiG to the US dollar is strengthening, it actually means that prices should go down, instead of going up. Our fear is actually not inflation, but rather, deflation,” Mushayavanhu said.

However, the launch of the new currency has resulted in a chaotic transition, with disruptions to trade and pricing being felt across the whole nation. 

Certain shops are refusing to accept the old Zimbabwe dollar (ZWL) notes, commonly referred to as bond notes, resulting in “triple spending” for many. 

Meanwhile, the Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU) of the RBZ has frozen the bank accounts of 11 companies in a crackdown on exchange control violations. 

These firms have been trading exclusively in US dollars and refusing to transact in Zimbabwe’s new currency, the Zimbabwe Gold (ZiG).

“We have started to take tough measures to send a strong message to those who are bent on undermining the new currency,” said FIU Director-General Oliver Chiperesa. 

He added that the operation is ongoing and will be rolled out countrywide, targeting all major trading centres.

The crackdown will continue, according to Chiperesa, sending a clear signal to potential violators of the country’s exchange control regulations. 

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