Zimbabwe to introduce higher denomination notes

President Emmerson Mnangagwa, pictured, who replaced long-time ruler Robert Mugabe in July ©Getty Images

HARARE (Xinhua) – Zimbabwean President Emmerson Mnangagwa said on Friday new 10 and 20 Zimbabwe dollar notes will be introduced in the next few days as the government moves to contain persistent cash shortages.

Mnangagwa said the introduction of the new higher denomination bank notes, following that of 2 and 5 dollars a few weeks ago, will increase money supply and help curb the prevailing cash shortages.

Speaking at an anti-corruption day commemoration, he said the central bank had this week increased the amount of cash it injected into the market from between 10 million dollars and 14 million dollars daily to 30 million dollars to improve cash availability.

The cash shortages have resulted in long queues of customers at banks, resulting in some unscrupulous individuals taking advantage of the shortages to hoard and sell cash at a premium.

“We will take further measures if the situation does not improve,” he added.

He reiterated calls for Zimbabweans to support the local currency that was re-introduced in June after the ban on the use of the multiple currency regime since 2009.

“Mozambicans have their currency called Metical, Botswana has the Pula and South Africa has the Rand, in Malawi they have theirs and Zambia has the Kwacha. The citizens do not care whether their currency is strong or not, they take ownership of it,” he said.

Mnangagwa said sole use of the local currency in domestic trade was imperative for the country’s economic development, especially considering that Zimbabwe, unlike its neighbors, was not receiving any financial assistance from multilateral financial institutions due to Western sanctions.