Zimbabwe president hints at local dollar revamp

Connie Queline

Zimbabwe president hints at local dollar revamp

Zimbabwean President Emmerson Mnangagwa hinted that the authorities will soon announce steps to halt a plunge in its currency, which is the world’s worst performer against the dollar this year.

“We shall soon be announcing the introduction of our structured currency,” Mnangagwa said Tuesday at his first cabinet meeting of the year in the capital, Harare. The nation’s fiscal and monetary heads are working on a raft of policy measures to arrest price increases, stabilise the currency and encourage savings, he said, without providing further details.

George Guvamatanga, the secretary for finance and economic development, didn’t immediately respond to a text message seeking comment.

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The Zimbabwean dollar has lost more than 40% of its value against the dollar this year and traded at 10,927 on Tuesday, its weakest level since being reintroduced in 2019. The depreciation has stoked annual inflation that soared to 34.8% last month from 26.5% in December. Rising costs of food and goods and services including housing and electricity contributed to the surge.

Zimbabwe has been struggling to stabilise its foreign-exchange rate even after the authorities took multiple steps to support it, including mandating corporates to pay taxes strictly in the local currency, introducing gold-backed digital money and liberalising the exchange rate.

© 2024 Bloomberg

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