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ZIMBABWE’S NEW GOLD-BACKED CURRENCY (ZiG)



  Apr 15, 2024

ZIMBABWE’S NEW GOLD-BACKED CURRENCY (ZiG)



1. What is the Zimbabwe Gold (ZiG)?

The Zimbabwe Gold, or ZiG, is a new gold-backed currency introduced by Zimbabwe’s central bank to combat high inflation and reduce the country’s dependence on the US dollar.

2. Why has Zimbabwe introduced ZiG?

Zimbabwe introduced the ZiG as part of its efforts to stabilize the economy, curb the high inflation rate which hit 55% in March 2024, and address the depreciation of the Zimbabwe dollar, which lost 80% of its value this year alone. The gold backing is seen as a measure to instill confidence in the new currency.

3. How is ZiG backed by gold?

Zimbabwe’s central bank has disclosed that it holds 2.1 tons of gold and other assets, including diamonds, equivalent to 0.4 tons of gold, to back the ZiG currency, aiming to provide a stable and reliable value base.

4. What is the exchange rate of ZiG to the US dollar?

The ZiG started trading with an exchange rate of 13.56 to the US dollar, as set by Zimbabwe’s central bank.

5. Are there concerns about the new currency?

Yes, there are reservations regarding the effectiveness of the ZiG in solving Zimbabwe’s economic challenges. Analysts suggest that the economy needs fundamental fixes, such as reductions in fiscal deficit and external debt, beyond the introduction of a new currency.

6. Could ZiG address the shortage of US coins in Zimbabwe?

The introduction of ZiG could potentially solve the practical problem of a shortage of US coins in Zimbabwe, where transactions often result in change being given in sweets, chocolates, or pens.

7. What steps is Zimbabwe taking to promote the use of ZiG?

Zimbabwe is preparing a structured roadmap to gradually increase the use of ZiG. For example, it has made it compulsory for companies to settle at least half of their quarterly taxes in ZiG.

8. Why is Zimbabwe trying to move away from the US dollar?

Zimbabwe has been attempting to move away from the US dollar to regain control over its monetary policy, curb inflation, and address economic instability caused by years of mismanagement. The dominance of the US dollar has been identified as a contributing factor to inflation and economic vulnerability.

9. What challenges does the ZiG face?

The ZiG faces several challenges, including establishing credibility and stability, ensuring widespread acceptance, and achieving the intended economic stabilization in the face of high inflation, fiscal deficits, and external debt.

10. What does the introduction of ZiG signify for Zimbabwe’s economy?

The introduction of the ZiG signifies Zimbabwe’s continued efforts to address its economic challenges, stabilize inflation, and reduce dependence on foreign currencies. It reflects a strategic move towards utilizing the country’s gold reserves to instill confidence in its currency, though its success will depend on broader economic reforms and stabilization measures.


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