Exporters to continue getting US$

Source: Exporters to continue getting US$ | Herald (Business)

Ishemunyoro Chingwere Business Reporter

Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe (RBZ) Governor Dr John Mangudya says the new monetary regulations as announced through Statutory Instrument (SI) 142 of 2019 will have no effect on payment modalities to exporters.

Exporters – who are largely in gold, tobacco and cotton production – are allowed to retain part of their earnings in US Dollars as a Government strategy to boost production by insulating them from joining the foreign currency queue at the interbank market.

There have been changes to Zimbabwe’s monetary system after Government on Monday, through (SI) 142 of 2019 also known as Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe (Legal Tender) Regulations, scrapped the multi-currency system and reintroduced the Zimbabwe Dollar.

The Zimbabwe dollar, that is RTGS balances as well as bond notes and bond coins, is now the only legal tender in the country.

Government is eager to stimulate local production as an economic revival stimulus as well as creating jobs and will continue with the payment regime that has been credited with keeping the productive sector alive.

In the gold sector, the country’s single largest foreign currency earner, leakages have been kept in check largely due to the authorities’ decision to allow miners to retain part of their earnings in foreign currency.

In a brief statement to The Herald Business, Dr Mangudya said there won’t be any changes to what exporters are getting.

“There hasn’t been any change on the payment modalities for gold, cotton and tobacco,” said Dr Mangudya.

Speculators had as of yesterday began circulating a fake “new payment” system for gold miners, which would have seen producers opting for the parallel market as opposed to selling through state gold buying entity – Fidelity Printers and Refineries.

FPR head of gold operations Mehluleli Dube was quick to dismiss the fake memo and reiterated that miners will continue receiving part US Dollar and Zimbabwe Dollar payments at 55 per cent and 45 per cent respectively.

“The supposed new payment system being circulated is fake and has not been originated by us (FPR),” said Mr Dube.

“There was obviously a bit of confusion when the new regulations were announced yesterday (Monday), but with guidance from the relevant authorities, I can tell you that the miners will continue getting their foreign currency.

“The import of the new regulations is that miners are exporters so they are entitled to a chunk of payment in foreign currency, which in this case will be 55 per cent and the remaining 45 per cent being paid in local currency,” he said.

The gold sector is key to the economy reaching its 2030 target by which it should attain upper middle income earning status and is Government mindful of producers needs for all to stay in business.

Government has set FPR a gold delivery target of 100 tonnes by 2023, up from a record-breaking 33,2 tonnes last year.