Zimbabwe’s new currency, ZiG, starts trading

By Staff Reporter

Zimbabwe’s new gold backed currency, Zimbabwe Gold or ZiG, started trading on Monday with few doubting its sustainability in an economy that has lurched from crisis to crisis for the past 25 years.

ZiG was launched on Friday by Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe (RBZ) governor John Mushayavanhu to replace the Zimbabwe dollar which has been battered by runaway inflation since launch.

The new currency has been pegged in denominations of 1, 2, 5, 10, 20, 100 and 200 (1ZiG, 2ZiG, 5ZiG, 10ZiG, 20Zig, 50ZiG, 100ZiG, and 200ZiG).

Bank systems were also configured to comply with the new monetary regime which sees the new currency trading at the initial rate of 13.56 to $1.

“The new currency will co-circulate with other foreign currencies in the economy,” Mushayavanhu said in his maiden Monetary Policy Statement he presented at the RBZ building in Harare Friday.

The central bank chief said Zimbabweans have 21 days to convert their ZWL bank notes to ZiG.

The sustainability of the new currency however is in doubt as many locals have long trusted use of the US dollar for both trading and storing the value of their hard earned savings.

This has been motivated by that the old currencies launched before have all been decimated by inflation, widely blamed on multiple factors which include government’s unhinged printing of bank notes to meet demand triggered by rampaging price increases over the years.

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