“Shopkeepers Can Still Mark Their Prices In US$”

The SI is not so far-reaching as its makers perhaps intended, Veritas Zimbabwe has claimed.

Veritas Zimbabwe further made reference to its “Bill Watch 15 of the 21st March 2019” in which it states:

Legal tender means a currency which, if offered in payment of a debt, discharges the debt unless the creditor and the debtor have specifically agreed otherwise.  So if a debtor owes a creditor $20, say, the debtor can normally repay the debt by offering $20 in RTGS dollars (because they are legal tender).

If however the parties have agreed that the debt should be repaid in US dollars, then the debtor must repay it in those dollars.  There is no law in Zimbabwe which invalidates a contract that stipulates payment in a foreign currency.  Similarly there is no law in Zimbabwe that requires prices to be marked up in legal tender or accounts to be drawn up in legal tender.

It then concludes that the new instrument does not specifically forbid contracts that require payments to be made in a foreign currency. Veritas Zimbabwe added:

…so if shopkeepers mark their prices in US dollars, say, or insist on payment in that currency there is nothing to stop them doing so.

Veritas further claims that the main reason behind the ‘reintroduction’ of the Zimbabwean dollar was to prevent the RTGS dollar from further deteriorating. The RTGS has, since its introduction in February, been shedding value against other currencies.

Meanwhile, memories of the 2008 hyperinflation that reached a record high of 231 million percent are haunting Zimbabweans.

More: Veritas Zimbabwe