The Bankers Association of Zimbabwe, which represents all banking institutions in Zimbabwe, welcomes and supports the new measures recently announced by the Governor of Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe, which are aimed at addressing cash shortages, whilst simultaneously stabilizing and stimulating the economy.
The policy measures are in the main, meant to:-
• Resolve the current cash shortages and ensure the efficient allocation and use of foreign exchange resources. These measures will also stem the unauthorized externalization of currency, which has contributed significantly to the current cash shortages.
• Strengthen the multi-currency system by increasing the availability, and the widening use of alternative currencies that are part of the multicurrency basket; ie the addition of the Rand, and Euro to the basket.
• Introduce Bond Notes as an incentive to exporters. It is anticipated that these export incentives, which will be paid to exporters in the Bond Notes, will enhance the competitiveness of exporting companies.
• Incentivise the local production of goods and services in order to reduce the need to import those goods and services that can otherwise be locally produced.
• Promote the widespread use of electronic platforms for settling domestic transactions across all forms and sizes of businesses; ie the use of Point of Sale Machines to conduct all transactions in USD, Euro and Rands.
• Promote a savings culture by encouraging the payment of positive rates of interest on savings and fixed deposits made with banks for periods that extend beyond six months.
It is to be understood that Bond notes are NOT being issued to replace or undermine the multicurrency system, but are being issued as an incentive to promote exports. Business will still be conducted on the basis of the basket of multi-currencies. The Bankers Association of Zimbabwe therefore endorses these measures and would like to assure the banking public they have been introduced by the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe, not only to deal with the current cash shortages in the economy, but also to stabilize and stimulate the economy through the promotion of exports.
DR. C. C. JINYA