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Zimbabwe’s sale of gold coins to fight inflation is missed opportunity to boost reserves, says IMF – Kitco NEWS

(Kitco News) Zimbabwe’s plan to sell gold coins to tame inflation is a missed opportunity to build better gold reserves, according to the International Monetary Fund (IMF).

Over the summer, Zimbabwe’s central bank started selling gold coins to fight inflation. The idea was that gold coins would provide a store of value to the country’s plunging currency and give the population an alternative to the U.S. dollar.

The one troy-ounce 22-carat gold coins named ‘Mosi-Oa-Tunya,’ meaning “Smoke that Thunders” in reference to Victoria falls, have been very popular. After the first week of being launched, which was at the end of July, the country’s central bank sold 1,500 gold coins

Each gold coin has a serial number and can be bought with local currency, the U.S. dollar, and other foreign currencies. The price is set based on the international price of gold and production costs. As of this week, each gold coin was going for $1,755, according to the central bank’s website.

The owners of the coins can convert them into cash or make a trade-in whenever needed. The gold coins could also be used as legal tender to transact in or as a security for loans.

The goal is to lower the demand for U.S. dollars following the collapse of the Zimbabwe dollar. Earlier, Zimbabwe revealed plans to adopt the U.S. dollar as legal tender for the next five years to stabilize the country’s exchange rate. This is the second time in more than a decade that Zimbabwe is legalizing the greenback as legal tender.

Surging inflation and currency devaluation have made things difficult for Zimbabwe’s population. The country’s annual inflation accelerated by 285% in August. In response to the crisis, Zimbabwe’s central bank has more than doubled its policy rate from 80% to 200%, a new record.

But the IMF sees this as a missed opportunity on the gold reserves side. “The sale of gold coins has contributed to withdrawing Zimbabwe dollar liquidity from the market, though it represents an opportunity cost in terms of foregone reserves for the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe,” Bloomberg quoted an IMF spokesperson as saying Thursday.

Earlier in the week, the IMF noted that Zimbabwe’s monetary policy moves were helping with currency devaluation. “The recent tightening of monetary policy and the contained budget deficits are policies in the right direction and have contributed to the narrowing of the parallel market exchange rate gap,” the IMF said Monday.

Due to the popularity of one-ounce gold coins, the country’s central bank is also working on releasing a tenth of an ounce coins.

The gold coin idea also inspired the country to try incentivizing the nation’s biggest gold miners to produce above the state-planned targets.

Large miners are being encouraged by the government to produce more gold. And those who exceed their targets can receive 80% of the payment for the additional output in foreign currency. The current payment plan is a 60-40 split between foreign and local currency payments. 

Zimbabwe’s gold output is already up 47% this year, with the government looking for gold mining to account for a third of 2023’s overall mining industry targeted $12 billion in revenue.

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Nationwide electricity supply disruption brings business to a halt – New Zimbabwe.com

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By Reason Razao

ZIMBABWE experienced a brief nationwide blackout Tuesday as power outages continue to rock the country.

Most traffic lights in and around the Central Business District (CBD) of Harare were not functioning as a result of the power cut.

Ear-splitting noise emanating from generators could be heard across the CBD as most traders staggered to keep their operations running.

The level of incessant power cuts even delayed court proceedings at the Harare Magistrates Court, where virtual cases were halted.

Despite network challenges emanating from the black out, Twitter was abuzz with Twimbos giving updates from different locations.

“As usual Kudzi is off the mark…. The whole nation was plunged into darkness from 10:20 to 11:30 .. including mines which don’t suffer from loadshedding,” twitted one Nickson Mhofu.

“Zimboz on the ground, do you have electricity in your town right now? My fellows in H-Town are telling me kuti tonaz magetsi dololo?,” wrote another user on Twitter.

Prior to earlier claims by Zimbabwe Electricity Transmission and Distribution Company (ZETDC) that power outages were being caused by increased economic activities, the power utility group last week issued a statement saying the intensified load shedding was a result of technical challenges in Kariba and Hwange.

“ZETDC would like to advise it’s valued customers that there is increased load curtailment from the 24th of September 2022.

“This is due to technical challenges being experienced at our Kariba and Hwange Power Stations as well as import constraints.

“The utility is therefore conducting a maintenance exercise to ensure full restoration of service,” read the statement.

Complaints have, however, been raised on the need for ZETDC to release a load shedding timetable.

Latest data from the Zimbabwe Power Company shows that the country is generating just 1 029 MW today against peak demand in excess of 1 700 MW.

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WATCH: Sanctions not fit for purpose: African presidents – Chronicle

The Chronicle

Nqobile Tshili, Chronicle Reporter
ILLEGAL sanctions imposed by the West on Zimbabwe violate the country’s sovereignty and are a barrier to national development and crime against humanity.

African leaders said this as they called for the immediate removal of the illegal embargo imposed on Zimbabwe by the West after the country embarked on the land reform programme to correct colonial imbalances.

Presidents from the African continent said the illegal sanctions have caused untold suffering.
The United States promulgated the Zimbabwe Democracy and Economic Recovery Act (Zidera) claiming that Zimbabwe is a threat to its foreign policy.

Since then the country has experienced serious economic challenges, affecting industry and commerce resulting in people losing their source of livelihoods leading to forced migration.

While Government has reaffirmed that the land reform programme is irreversible, the West has retained its coercive measures in a bid to cow Zimbabwe into submission.

Pressure is mounting for the removal of the sanctions, with African leaders who attended the 77th United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) in New York last week condemning the embargo which suffocates Zimbabwe.

President Macky Sall

The continent was led by the African Union (AU) chairperson and Senegalese president Macky Sall, in calling for the removal of the illegal sanctions.

“The AU once again calls for the lifting of foreign sanctions against Zimbabwe. These harsh measures continue to fuel a sense of injustice against an entire people and to aggravate their suffering in these times of deep crisis,” said President Sall.

His sentiment was echoed by Sadc chairperson and Democratic Republic Congo (DRC) President Felix Tshisekedi, who said the United Nations should make an effort to ensure the embargo imposed on Zimbabwe is removed unconditionally.

President Tshisekedi said the sanctions are an injustice and constitute a crime against Zimbabweans.
“In the name of international solidarity and justice, we do have questions over the maintenance of sanctions against the people of Zimbabwe.

These sanctions which, what’s more, date back to the era of the late President Mugabe. Why is our organisation so silent and so indifferent to this injustice, almost a crime against innocent people? As a current chair of Sadc, I firmly call upon the United Nations to do everything possible to achieve the immediate lifting of sanctions against Zimbabwe,” said President Tshisekedi.

Botswana President Mokgweetsi Masisi said while Zimbabweans are resilient, sanctions have become a hindrance in the country realising its full potential.

President Felix Tshisekedi

“While we are confident of the resilience and resolve of Zimbabwe as well as its economic transformation prospects, we are concerned that such measures are not advancing the cause of livelihoods of innocent Zimbabweans nor the calls for our Sustainable Development Goals,” said President Masisi.

Namibia’s President Hage Geingob said President Mnangagwa’s Second Republic has made laudable reforms hence the illegal sanctions are not fit for purpose. He said Zimbabwe can do better without sanctions imposed on the country.

“Equally, we call for the lifting of sanctions against the Republic of Zimbabwe. Why are sanctions in place for a country which is making progress at all levels? President Emmerson Mnangagwa and the people of Zimbabwe have made laudable progress and reforms and should be given a chance to succeed without the weight of sanctions,” he said.

South Africa’s International Relations and Cooperation Minister, Dr Naledi Pandor, reiterated the calls for the removal of sanctions saying they had a ripple effect on the Sadc region.

Her calls came just a week after South African President Cyril Ramaphosa told American President Joe Biden that sanctions were forcing Zimbabweans to leave their country to seek economic refuge in regional countries.

Dr Pandor said Zimbabwe was in the same situation as Cuba, whose development is constrained by the illegal sanctions. “South Africa calls for an end to the embargo against Cuba, which continues to impede the right to development of her people.

In the same vein, we call for an end to unilateral coercive measures against Zimbabwe, which have compounded the problems experienced by the people of Zimbabwe and have the detrimental effect on the broader Sadc region,” said Dr Pandor.
Newly elected Kenyan President William Ruto also used his address to call for the unconditional removal of sanctions.

He said the ordinary suffer more as a result of sanctions.
“There might never be a more opportune time to revisit the practice of unilateral coercive actions, which often violate fundamental tenets of a rule-based international order such as those imposed on Zimbabwe and Cuba.

“Apart from undermining the sovereign equality of nations, they also indiscriminately punish the general citizenry, reserving their bitterest sting for innocent hustlers and the vulnerable. This compounds injustice and worsens suffering,” said President Ruto.

President William Ruto

Addressing the same platform, President Mnangagwa welcomed the anti-sanctions solidarity by Africa and other progressive nations describing Zimbabwe as a peace-loving country which wants a fair chance to deliver on its peoples’ aspirations.

“We remain indebted to the Sadc region and the AU well as other progressive members in the community of nations for the unwavering support and calls for the removal of these unwarranted and unjustified sanctions. We once again call for their immediate and unconditional removal,” said President Mnangagwa.

He welcomed the findings of the United National Special Rapporteur on the Negative Impact of the Unilateral Coercive Measures on the enjoyment of human rights who visited Zimbabwe in 2021.

Professor Alena Douhan, the UN Special Rapporteur visited Zimbabwe on a fact-finding mission in October last year and presented her findings on the impact of sanctions to the United Nations Human Rights Council in Geneva, Switzerland earlier this month, where she revealed that sanctions were impeding the enjoyment of human rights by Zimbabweans. – @nqotshili

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Entire Zimbabwe goes dark – Bulawayo24 News

ZESA says entire country went dark at 10.26AM today after “an abrupt system disturbance on the Alaska-Warren high voltage transmission powerlines linking Kariba and Harare.”

While this now resolved, ZESA warns of further outages in days ahead due to “depressed generation”




“Zimbabwe Electricity Transmission & Distribution Company (ZETDC) would like to apologize to its valued customers for an unplanned nationwide power outage that happened at 1026HRS. This was due to an abrupt system disturbance on the Alaska-Warren high voltage transmission powerlines (Linking Kariba and Harare). This has since been resolved by our Engineers.

“Further to our communication on the 24th of September 2022, customers are encouraged to use electricity sparingly as the national grid is still experiencing depressed generation.”

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