ZiG Is A CZI Invention, Not Reserve Bank – Mushayavanhu

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Wide consultations involving economic players such as the Confederation of Zimbabwe Industries (CZI), and other key stakeholders preceded the launch of the Zimbabwe Gold (ZiG) currency.

This was said by Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe (RBZ) Governor John Mushayavanhu while addressing business leaders at a Zimbabwe National Chamber of Commerce (ZNCC) organised meeting in Gweru yesterday to unpack the new Monetary Policy Statement (MPS). He said:

Consultations before the MPS were made, yes. My appointment was announced on December 8, but His Excellency told me on September 11 that I was going to be the Governor of RBZ.

So, I started working as Governor from as far back as September 11 and we consulted far and wide. We didn’t come to Gweru, but we spoke to the Chamber of Mines, ZNCC, Retailers Association, and CCZ, and you will be surprised to note that most of the input came from the stakeholders.

We borrowed a lot from a paper that was presented by CZI. We didn’t invent ZiG; it was invented by CZI.

They are the ones who said to us that when we look at the amount of RTGS/bonds in circulation if we convert them, we can buy it all and start afresh. This came from CZI and so we consulted far and wide.

Mushayavanhu insisted that the Central Bank’s operations were independent with no Government interference as spelt out in the RBZ Act. He said:

We are not subject to interference by the Ministry of Finance and Economic Development. I want to assure you that when I went to the Central Bank, the first thing I was interested in was to confirm whether or not the Ministry of Finance was dipping into the coffers of the Central Bank whenever they felt like it.

I could not find an occurrence when the ministry used its overdraft facility whenever it wanted. The Ministry of Finance is running a surplus budget and if anything, we handle their deposits and we see how they are running their accounts every day.

The Reserve Bank chief said the idea behind the Monetary Policy Statement (MPS), was to ensure that the new currency was acceptable and stable. Said Mushayavanhu:

Once we do that, we create an acceptable currency. Remember with the currency we had in the past, as soon as one got the RTGS in the account, they made sure that by the end of the day, they would have changed it to US dollars at whatever price.

But we want to create a stable currency, which you can sell and that way you see people banking the extra money they have and start building up towards something they will be investing in.

The ZiG was launched on 05 April 2024 to replace the inflation-hit Zimbabwe dollar, which had fallen to around $33 000 against US$1 on the interbank market and traded above $40 000 to US$1 on the parallel market.

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