Zimbabwe central bank announces introduction of new currency
www.chinaview.cn 2008-07-31 15:32:23   Print

    HARARE, July 31 (Xinhua) -- The Zimbabwe central bank has announced the introduction of a new currency to curb the country's hyper-inflated currency, state media the Herald reported on Thursday.

    Governor of the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe Gideon Gono announced the introduction of the new currency on Wednesday.

    Representing his 2008 mid-term monetary policy statement in Harare, the central bank governor lopped off 10 zeros from the country's currency to turn 10 billion dollars into one, the Herald reported.

    The governor also announced the introduction of old coins which is aimed at increasing the amount of money in circulation.

    Further, the central bank chief raised the daily cash withdrawal limits by 1,900 percent to 2 trillion dollars or 200 dollars in the new currency.

    The new and old currency will co-circulate with the existing bearer checks and special agro checks, which will expire on December 31.

    The monetary measures will come into effect on Friday, the Herald reported.

    Speaking on the representation of the new monetary measures, Gono said "Go back and look for those coins, we never demonetized them." The governor also announced the introduction of a 500 dollar note.

    "We once again wish to call upon stakeholders to exercise restraint in their demand for cash and in how prices are set in the goods and services markets," Gono said.

    "The current reform efforts will, therefore, work to sustain permanency of the new currency being rolled out, along with the conveniences it will bring," the Herald quoted the central bank chief as saying.

    The hyper-inflation rate in the country is estimated at 2.2 million percent year-on-year last month.

    Also on Wednesday, Gono stressed the need to fund the agricultural sector, which is the pillar of the country's economy.

    The Herald quoted him as saying that the fourth phase of the Agricultural mechanization program would be launched in the near future, and by launching the program between 70 percent and 80 percent of farmers will be fully mechanized by 2010.

    According to the Herald, Gono also said he has seen no need for political bickering, referring to the current political crisis in the country which emerged after the first round of presidential elections in March this year.

    The political bickering destabilizes the country's efforts to recover economic development and he called for political unity among parties in the country.

    On agricultural development, the central bank promised to continue assisting fertilizer companies with the aim of increasing production.

    "This will enable them to put their industry to full production and enable them to meet the fertilizer requirements that we need," he was quoted by the newspaper as saying.

    Soon After the central bank chief announced the introduction of the new monetary measures, Zimbabwe President Robert Mugabe warned the country's business sector that he will impose emergency rules if they profiteer.

    In a televised address, Mugabe said "If you drive us more than you have done, we will impose emergency measures, and we do not want to place our country in a situation of emergency rules."

Editor: Du Guodong
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