Zimbabwe’s new higher denomination notes start circulating amid soaring inflation

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Zimbabwe’s new 10 dollar note started circulating on Tuesday as the Southern African country battles high inflation and cash shortages.

The move is part of the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe (RBZ)’s measures to curb cash shortages that have seen premiums of up to 40 percent being charged to get cash at the black market.

A new 20 dollar banknote will also start circulating by the first week of June.

Prior to the addition of the new bank notes, only 2 dollar and 5 dollar notes were in circulation.

The Zimbabwe dollar has continued to plummet against the U.S. dollar on the parallel market since the RBZ announced the introduction of the new banknotes.

While the interbank market rate on Wednesday was US$1:ZWL$25, the parallel market rate stood at US$1:ZW60.5, according to Zimrates.

Last year, Zimbabwe re-introduced the Zimbabwe dollar that it had discarded in 2009 owing to hyperinflation, and ended a decade-long multi-currency regime.

However, with the introduction of the new currency, high levels of inflation have been experienced in the country.

Official figures from the Zimbabwe National Statistics Agency show that year-on-year inflation in March 2020 stood at 676 percent.