CBZ bemoans lack of back-up for Mthuli Ncube reforms

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By Alois Vinga

THE Commercial Bank of Zimbabwe (CBZ) has bemoaned lack of support systems to back economic reforms being implemented by Finance Minister, Mthuli Ncube since 2018.

In a statement recently, the bank said the monetary and fiscal reforms which include the de-dollarisation of the economy which came with reintroduction of the Zimbabwe dollar were not backed by adequate support systems.

“The lack of necessary interventions such as balance of payments and budgetary support to buttress the reform efforts evidently affected policy conduct during the period under review.

“This was reflected through foreign currency shortages, exchange rate weaknesses and inflationary pressures,” CBZ said.

The bank said apart from mentioned factors, supply of fuel, electricity and water also remained below optimal levels, thereby constraining investment and expansion of production.

This comes after most targets envisaged by government when it introduced its policy reforms have not been met due to a slew of factors.

Several businesses have raised the red flag over the devastating impact of these measures which they blame for eroding salaries, increasing inflation and choking demand for goods and services.

Meanwhile, during the financial year ended December 31 2019, the bank recorded a profit of $313 million with $17.8 billion total assets against liabilities of $15 billion, leaving the financial institution with a sound positive net worth.

During the period under review the bank raked in $537 million through interest income against expenses of $155 million, leaving a net interest income of $382 million.

CBZ also recorded net non-interest income of $2.2 billion with commission and fees income raking in $579 million.

The management board proposed the declaration of a final dividend of $22.99 cents per share.

This declaration translates to a growth of 1766.1% on the comparative 2018 final dividend.

“The Directors have engaged themselves to continuously assess the ability of the group to continue to operate as a going concern and to determine the continued appropriateness of the going concern assumption that has been applied in the preparation of these financial statements,” added CBZ.