The Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe (RBZ) will introduce gold coins as it moves to create a new avenue for investors, central chief John Mangudya has said.
The move comes as there has been increased demand for the United States dollar as a store of wealth leading to the sharp depreciation of the local unit.
The dollar is trading at between ZWL$600 and ZWL$650 on the parallel market and ZWL$352.0626 on the foreign currency auction system.
In an update Monday following last week’s monetary policy committee (MPC) of the bank, Mangudya said gold coins will be sold through banks.
“The MPC resolved to introduce gold coins into the market as an instrument that will enable investors to store value. The gold coins will be minted by Fidelity Gold Refineries (Private) Limited and will be sold to the public through normal banking channels,” Mangudya said.
The MPC, which met on Friday, also resolved to put in place mechanisms to formalise forward pricing arrangements through the development of a market for forward exchange rates “having noted the widespread use of forward pricing in foreign exchange by some economic agents”.
The MPC also increased the bank policy rate to 200% from 80% in line with inflation to curb speculative borrowings, blamed for leading to the rout of the local currency.
Annual inflation raced to 191.6% in June from 131.7% in May.
Mangudya said the MPC noted that the increase in inflation was undermining consumer demand and confidence and that, if not controlled, it would reverse the significant economic gains achieved over the past two years.