Govt to bring back Zim dollar – Tendai Biti

via Govt to bring back Zim dollar — Biti – DailyNews Live by John Kachembere and Roadwin Chirara  18 DECEMBER 2013 

Former Finance minister Tendai Biti said yesterday the Zanu PF government would be forced to reintroduce the shelved Zimbabwe dollar next year to avert total economic collapse.

“The sad truth of the matter is that the Zimbabwean dollar will be back. It is not a matter of if, but when,” the MDC shadow Finance minister told a press briefing at the party’s Harvest House headquarters in central Harare.

Zimbabwe abandoned its local currency in 2009 after it had been ravaged by hyperinflation which topped 231 million and introduced a basket of foreign currencies dominated by the United States dollar.

However, speculation has been rife following the re-election of President Robert Mugabe in August this year that the local unit will be re-introduced. Some officials in Mugabe’s Zanu PF party have called for the reintroduction of the Zimbabwean dollar to help ease liquidity challenges in the economy.

Biti said since September, revenues have collapsed and the government cannot meet its wage bill and other obligations.

“The government has been borrowing to pay the wage bill, in the process committing the cardinal sin that you do not borrow for consumption or recurrent expenditure,” Biti told reporters.

“To borrow close to $300 million in a space of 100 days is irresponsible and unacceptable, more so when it is being done behind the back of Parliament.”

The ex-Finance minister, who is also MDC secretary-general, said since there was no Overseas Development Assistance and Foreign Direct Investment flowing into Zimbabwe, it was inevitable that a solution must be found to monetise the domestic debt, which he predicted to be around $1 billion by year end.

“The easy and inevitable solution will be to print the Zimbabwean dollar and unleash the cataleptic energy of the printing press,” he said.

Biti’s comments on the re-introduction of the local currency comes on the back of increased speculation that the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe (RBZ) subsidiary, Fidelity Printers was of late re-engaging its former employees in preparation to mint the Zimbabwe dollar.

But Fidelity Printers and the Reserve Bank have both dismissed speculation on the return of the Zim dollar.

“As monetary authorities, we wish to assure the business community and members of the public that there are no plans to reintroduce the Zimbabwean dollar in the near future,” acting Reserve Bank governor Charity Dhliwayo said last week.

Finance minister Patrick Chinamasa has said the regime will continue indefinitely but Tony Hawkins, the head of the University of Zimbabwe’s Graduate School of Management said the tightening liquidity in the economy could force a rethink and that there was always the risk that politicians would seek a “superficially attractive” way out to finance campaign promises.

“I suspect — perhaps fear — that the government will opt for some dual currency option,” said Hawkins in a recent presentation of the 2014 economic outlook.

Biti noted it would be difficult to revert back to the local currency under the current economic environment but said government will railroad its return nonetheless.

“It’s impossible to go back to your own currency once you have dollarised,” he said.

“This is because currencies strive on trust and confidence and the Zimbabwean populace have no trust in the Zimbabwean dollar.

“Only Panama in 1904 was successful in re-introducing its local currency after it had dollarised.”

But Biti said the Zimbabwean dollar will be forced on those sectors that cannot afford to resist it such as parastatals and civil servants.

Unfortunately, he said, this risks creating a very disproportionate parallel market.

The lawyer-cum-politician predicted that government would next year fail to pay civil servants due to the ballooning current account deficit.

“What we are likely to see early next year is a new lexicon of staggered payments for civil servants salaries,” Biti said. “This will stem from the fact that at the moment government is struggling to pay

bonuses, which on its own is a criminal offence and unacceptable.

“There has been de facto shut down of government. Line ministries are now starved of resources and have basically ground to a halt.”

Turning to the 2014 National Budget, Biti said Chinamasa would present a fictitious budget considering that there were no resources to fund it.

“In this era of cash budgeting, you don’t plan to present a deficit-financing budget,” Biti said.

“On Thursday Chinamasa will present a Mickey-Mouse budget because there are no resources to back it up. That’s why Chinamasa had initially refused to present it,” he said.

 

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41 comments on “Govt to bring back Zim dollar – Tendai Biti
  1. adam jones says:

    The dark days are fast approaching. No manufacturing in Zimbabwe so we depend on exports. However, with the Zim dollar returning, countries from which we currently import will not do trade on the zim dollar. Its more like in our young years when we used to cut pieces of old news paper and use it as money kumatope. The landslide victory must now deliver. Itai tione ka.

  2. adam jones says:

    Meant to say we depend on imports. Exports? My foot. Skills exports – yes.

  3. If they are clever like they claim they are, this is the litmus test for them. Can Nikuv do it again for them. we wait to see.

    It is the economy not politics stupid!

  4. Zeezee says:

    Back to the days when it was cheaper to use Zim currency than to use toilet paper?

  5. Peter tosh says:

    The solution is to keep quiet about complaining because it doesn’t help at all. If it did help we would be far by now, 34 years.

  6. Rejoice cos the return will mean the end of the zanupf cabal and we won’t have to wait till 2018 for nikuv erections

  7. Tapakutenda says:

    Am told that the delays in presenting the budget was because NIKUV was working on it. Am also told Nikuv is busy designing the security features and water mark for your new look plastic feel zim dollar. God help us.

  8. NBS says:

    Whatever we sow we reap! There comes a time…..

  9. Khaya'bonina says:

    Do we really love our our country , Egyptians acted instead of talking , they managed to unseat their president with three collective words enough is enough , some of them even died during the exercise solely for the love of their country , we have got our well advanced youth , equiped with education , having all the strategies to lead us to a better Zimbabwe , Zimbabwe will never be the Zimbabwe that we dream without a louder word from the youth , the youth must be present for this country and lead the way , the yesterday’s youth led us during the chimurenga war , they faced the enermy with barrel of guns , we gave them all the support they needed and they won , today’s youth is well armed with education , they have got all leadership skills for the better of Zimbabwe unfortunately their way is blocked out by this autocratic leadership of ZANU PF , lets make a difference , there is time for negotiating , unfortunately that time is over , there is time for talking and shouting unfortunately that time has already expired , the time to act is now , the youth of 1976 in our neighbouring country South Africa acted in a brave way and today we can see the fruits of their good work.

    • Timba says:

      And whose blood are you encouraging to be spilt?? You must think we stupid. Encouraging us to kill one another ha? Why don’t you do it youself?? South African better where? Stay current, don’t you hear the noise rising in SA?? Idiot!!!

  10. munzwa says:

    Please someone, will you let us know what our foreign reserves(gold) holdings are? Are these levels not normally disclosed in the yearly budget?

  11. Murimi wanhasi says:

    Biti is dyin for return of Zimdollar,hopin it will collapse the govt.Keep dreaming.
    Run to England if the bearers are coming then,unless u hope to stick around and make it as a money changer…kikkiki…honestly

  12. Murimi wanhasi says:

    Khaya b stays in cookoo land.Why rise up against a legit govt?
    I bet u not even here!

  13. Rwendo says:

    Dollar seems likely to stay.. but could these jokers bring back, in parallel, a USD equivalent, bearer’s cheque to cover government shortfalls like salaries, etc.?

  14. rabbiesvirus says:

    Biti must not talk about Zim Dollar rubbish we thought yu were reasonable yet yu are stupid in your mind. To hell with Biti hopeless of you

  15. Khaya'bonina says:

    @Murimi , i am ready to meet you , make some means now , right now i am driving along Jaison Ziyaphapha Moyo street in the city of Byo , so shutup , you are not ashamed even to say legit govt , shut all your holes you are polluting the air and causing a cancer to our beatiful Zimbabwe .

  16. Sg says:

    Zimbabwe needs God.The issue of Zim dollar returning will ruin our economy. I suppose there is need of fresh blood in the government to take the State to the unenforceable generation. The current guys have totally failed.Manufacturing and Agriculture are operating below 50% capacity- this obviously means retrenchment adding to the already social chaos.

    Get into the city centre – the scattered vendors located everywhere is symptomatic enough to tell that something is amiss.

  17. chom says:

    we dont want to hear about the zim dollar coz only those top politicians will be benefiting at the expense of the general citizens.kana matadza pliz budai pachena.kwete kudzorera vanhu kumashure nguva dzose.hapana munhu anombofarira izvozvo

    • Sg says:

      @ Chom. this is an obvious thing that Zanu Pf has failed.Eg Imagine people splash $3m by Chinhoyi Conference debating to rename the Victoria Falls – is that value adding? They should prioritize issues to do with the economy.

  18. Mr Mixed Race says:

    @Murimi you got your match today ,so be a man enough and take the challenge.

  19. Khaya'bonina says:

    @Sg , yes Zimbabwe needs God , but God will never come as a gift , God was there for us during the chimurenga war , he witnessed our actions and indeed answered us and gave us freedom from the colonial rule . Lets act instead of talking and God will be there for Zimbabwe , a mere demonstration will be an answer to ZANU PF , giving a blind eye to the situation will never be the answer . Yesterday i was at Matebeland South rural areas , please ZANU PF must see the damage they have caused , people are suffering .

    Zimbabwe is not ZANU PF it is for the people , ZANU PF must represent the people or they must swift . If they are the legitimate government as this boy MURIMI day dreams , than they must get things fixed , if they can’t represent us then it is as clear as day that they rigged the elections , old oxen running shot of creative ideas to fix up the economy .

    • Sg says:

      @Khaya- Noted. I follow your concerns.I agree with you that people are suffering not only in Mat South but in most rural areas all is not well.Politics is so easy to rig but the same does not apply on economy-the latter has to go by discipline , its a matter of supply and demand. However now the signs of July 31 are being felt by fellow Zimbabweans. Imagine if the current situation remains-liquidity crisis, unemployment , social decay -etc for the next 5years.

      Your concern ‘a mere demonstration will be an answer to ZANU PF’, am not sure if this is the best solution. Violence in my opinion, is not the best solution, rather it causes more harm than good then.Zimbabwean is peaceful country. We need the re-alignment of the government but all the same when the ‘hyena is the judge , the goat has no rights’

    • Timba says:

      Kip Dreaming!!

  20. Happiness says:

    You will remember Tsvangirai very soon he was making the right noises and the economy was on a steady growth path up until the cursed July 2013 elections. My problem with him though is that he is not very strategic. He behaves like Joshua Nkomo who was advocating for peaceful means of fighting the white regime when the writing was on the wall that the settlers would not give away power through peaceful means and we all know what happened to him, The Zanu pf group that used force emerged as the victors up until today. In South Africa Oliver Tambo and Walter Sisulu also tried in vain to use peaceful means but all in vain until Mandela emerged with a new strategy and sooner than later a military wing Umkhonto We Sizwe was formed. It was through that wing that the Settler regime gave in to the demands of the masses. Tsvangirai just like the likes of Walter Sisulu in South Africa has paved the way for a democratic prosperous Zimbabwe and what you need now is a Mandela to emerge from the young crop of politicians in Zimbabwe to take over from where Tsvangirai left and deliver Zimbabwe from this despotism. That’s why we often say in our meetings people in Zimbabwe are not suffering at all. They are fine with the status-quo. If they were really suffering they would do what the youth of the 60’s and 70’s did, fight against the regime that oppresses them or else shut up and go and queue at the banks for the whole day for their hard earned money and then queue at the supermarkets to buy Christmas groceries and get into the filthy buses to their rural villages to spend Christmas there.

  21. Murimi wanhasi says:

    KB I was in the field,as u r aware it has rained.So ,I will be unable to come up and meet u anytime soon
    I would just like to question yo logic of usin violence.R u willin to sacrifice yo kid,if u r a father?or if u r the youth,do it lets see..I dare u.U r just a couch fighter,busy rumbling imposibilities while driving.
    Dont forget yo Arab spring had deep religious influences…oh sorry,maybe u r a great Islamic scholar in the streets of Byo

  22. Tapakutenda says:

    groping in the dark all of us under seige. i say no to violence/war and agree with some who think some ground work has been done and all we need is people with better political will. whichever way we look at it where we going is nearer than where we came from in terms of time. Almost 34 years now and it can never be another 34, not even half(17) not even 8.5 not even………….Read my lips, Mandela is there now and believe me he will continue his good work of advocating for the oppressed and the empoverished(made poor by others) and with the superior dimension he is now he will ask for a recall of those who have failed. Dont get me wrong, If somebody fails today it doesnt imply they have never been successful. They successfully liberated, they successfully diposessed land and redistributed it fairly or otherwise and give credit where it due. The failure we witness and cry about is because they have reached their optimum operational limit. We accept the whole old guard will not retire but we know they will be happy to DIE in power. That they will get so stop crying and dont be violent

  23. Tozvirevakupiko says:

    Happiness – you are very right! We have not suffered enough, when we do, when we really suffer – we wont need nobody to tell us to fight, whatever means that will be. Gore rinouya 2014??, hameno chokwadi!!

  24. Khaya'bonina says:

    Happiness , thank you i understand your concerns about Tsvangirai thats fine , what is the differnce between Mugabe and Tsvangirai , well huge difference , Mugabe is highly educated , he is among the top educated people in the word , he might be the most educated president in Africa . Question to you Happiness , did Mugabe use his education appropriate to leader Zimbabwe , didn’t he abuse his intelligence against us as Zimbabweans , is he not using his intelligence to manipulate the issues we are facing today ?? Okay , Tsangirai might be laking the strategy that we need , but as a president of the country it doesn’t mean that you have got to always strategise on your own , thats where ZANU PF had missed a point always waiting for Mugabe to do strategies for them , strategies on how to run the country must no be a one man’s idea among the party , it must be an executive board’s outcome with all inputs of those involved . Don’t worry about Tsvangirai’s level of education and how he strategises, what matters most is who is surrounding him and who is advicing him , those are the people playing a significant role . Today ZANU PF is failing because all along they had been waiting for Mugabe to strategise and implement his own unchallenged ideas dragging the whole country into sewage drains .

    • Parangeta says:

      While Mugarbage is by no means anywhere near the intelligence of real intellects, he had correspondence degrees, which are worthless.

      He also boasts about Honorary Degrees which are handed out like candy, by boot-lickers.

      Intellect doesn’t equate with ‘common sense’ and ‘street smarts’, which he lacks. That’s why Zimbabwe is in such a mess, he hasn’t a clue!

  25. Sg says:

    Hie,

    The question now is not about education bla bla. What really matters is does one has wisdom? Zim needs a wise and not an educated leader. Tsvangirai has wisdom but only that he is lacking support. These guys really are afraid of Tsvangirai -no wonder each time they gather for a conference they try by all means to lambast him for no good.They know he is a threat. If Tsvangirai, has conrad advisors, he is still a good leader and has people @ heart.Dai pasina Mwari akashanyira Tsvangirai, dai USD rakauya here muno? ZANU(PF) has failed us guys. The guys are just ruthless. Tsvangirai, re- aligne the party please, 2018 is not far.

    But all the same, zvichaita chete.Let us not be deprived of hope guys.

  26. Khaya'bonina says:

    @Murimi Wanhasi- ngiyindoda mina elomuzi , edlaka kahle ngukulima nje , indoda ehamba ngemota enhle engayisebenzelayo-MURIMI you are back again welcome just ground your facts so that you will grow up and be a good big boy, stop insulting adults wena mfana amabhadi azakulandela , woza lapha okugadelwa khona amabhasi aya eGoli abhalwe Mzansi , kulerestuarant khonalapho nje eceleni ithengisa ukudla , i am eating now R25 a plate , they are selling African food , come i will buy one for you , i can see mfana you are missing the point of debating because of hunger , or may you are in Harare izakulaya indlala , mina ngidla kamunandi mfana , lamasi izankefu akhona bhoyi- ngiliNdebele mfana mina ungethuki , i will never be a foreign in my beloved Zimbabwe , i am very proud of my country only your grandfather is disappointing by clinging on power at his age .

  27. Khaya'bonina says:

    @Murimi-Its nice to have boys like you , just jumping up and down like Snowball in the animal farm saluting Napoleon , make a difference between demonstration and violence , you make me laugh –ha ha ha ha ha ha- thats how a big man laughs at boys .

  28. Khaya'bonina says:

    @ Timba -you are really a man of few words , you don’t need to waist time , eh eh , i am laughing at this .

  29. Murimi wanhasi says:

    @Kb did it bother u when I said I was in the field? I guess u imagine me with a hoe,workin on scrawly maize plants.
    ha ha ha.I have tractors and use pivots for irrigation my friend.bought after the intro of the US dollar.
    Then u ramble in your and speak about R25 rand plates.U r so cheap bru.
    U think its showing off,eating bulk frozen chicken frm brazil @ some filthy back alley in jeepe st.?

  30. Africanson says:

    There is a difference between knowledge and wisdom. Knowledge comes from schooling and wisdom comes from faith, the best faith is in Jesus. Morgan has nether knowledge nor wisdom. But I admit that he has some degree of faith in campaigning for Zimbabwe’s economic demise to push zanu out of power. I doubt if he has knowledge of the results of his preferred route of getting into power. He has the determination to become the leader of Zimbabwe he has shown that for years but his wisdom of fighting the economy indirectly to get rid of zanu is not prudent. It seems that he dislikes the Zimbabwe economy as much as he dislikes zanu.

  31. i advise mr mugabe to call for fresh elections and resign from politics.that way,may be,history will be rewritten.

  32. ddz says:

    God help us!!!

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