New notes and coins which the government and the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe had announced would start circulating on Monday have finally started circulating on Tuesday, with people making withdrawals in banks.
The new money was introduced to ease cash shortages and bring back the local currency, which was scrapped in 2009 and replaced by the multi-currency regime.
The new currency look like the bond notes introduced in 2016, with added security features, while the two bond coin looks like the one dollar bond coin already in circulation.
Today, depositors started withdrawing the money in $5and $2 denominations as well as 2 bond coins from banks and cash machines. The new currency was supposed to be available on Monday, but the introduction was delayed.
“We are overwhelmed today because people want the money to avoid paying premiums demanded by cash barons in the streets. I am not sure how much we will give out today, but we are prepared for a busy day,” said a CBZ bank teller, who refused to be identified.
A business entrepreneur Taurai Jaure said he managed to withdraw $300 from his bank account and he hoped the banks would release more money next week.
“I got money, but it’s not enough as the prices of goods are rising on daily bases. I hope next week the banks will still have money,” he said.
The central bank and other government officials are hoping that the new votes will help to end perennial cash shortages. Money traders were now selling bond notes at a premium of 50%, because of cash shortages and depositors and mobile wallet holders would only get half of their balances in cash.
Despite the introduction of the new notes, a number of people queuing up to withdraw money, some economist were skeptical the new currency would help the country’s financial crisis.
By Success Majaramhepo