‘Bring Back The US$’: Business Tells Mnangagwa

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By Leopold Munhende

PRESIDENT Emmerson Mnangagwa, Finance Minister Mthuli Ncube, and the Presidential Advisory Committee (PAC) have been advised by the business community to seriously consider bringing back the US dollar into circulation, and rescue the collapsing economy.

Leaders from the business sector were Tuesday invited to a PAC meeting at State House chaired by Mnangagwa.

The business community was represented by senior executives from Old Mutual and other blue-chip companies.

However, during the meeting, the business delegation openly told Mnangagwa and Ncube that the fluctuating foreign exchange rates were weighing heavily on the country’s prospects for economic growth.

“From our perspective, we believe there is enough foreign currency to go along. It is all about confidence, how we make people believe that there is enough forex to go around, how to instill the confidence and how you actually make it to go around,” one of the business executives only identified as Skonken, told Mnangagwa and his ministers present.

“In our opinion, perhaps we need an open, formal, commercial foreign exchange market that everyone can enter and transact. In creating the market, I believe it is critical not to try to set or control the rate of exchange. Let the market do that.”

The Finance Minister has remained adamant that the Zimbabwe government would not re-dollarise the economy despite continued calls by the business community, civil servants, and ordinary citizens.

The government was forced to pay civil servants their 2021 13th cheque in US dollars, after the public workers had threatened to roll out massive protests if their demands were not met.

The Zimbabwean dollar, brought back upon the scrapping of the US in 2018, has been losing value. It is now trading at over US$1: $200 on the black market while the official rate is at $1: $110.