Chipo Chaumba and Panashe Chikonyora
Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe (RBZ) Deputy Governor Dr Jesimen Chipika has said monetary and fiscal policies introduced by the Government earlier this year, as part of the ongoing economic reforms, were meant to rebalance the economy.
Dr Chipika made the remarks at this year’s edition of the Banks and Banking Survey Awards ceremony held in Harare yesterday.
Since President Mnangagwa took over in 2017, his administration has embarked on a raft of reforms to set proper fundamentals for sustainable growth.
Some of the changes include fiscal consolidation, suspending borrowing using the RBZ overdraft window, funding public consumption using Treasury Bills, raised funding through the introduction of a 2 percent tax, reintroducing local currency and floating the exchange rate.
While some of the changes have upset the economic conditions and brought about challenges, Government says the change was not going to happen without pain, but is critical for a better and prosperous future.
Zimbabwe’s economic terrain has shifted markedly since the beginning of the year following currency changes that saw the reintroduction of the statutory instrument on the use of the Zimbabwean dollar scrapped a decade ago due to hyperinflation.
Dr Chipika said Government was trying to stop the harsh economic conditions from going out of control and laying the foundation for sustainable private sector-led economic transformation.
She said the return of the Zimbabwean dollar was meant to strengthen the fiscal sustainability of the national budget while containing inflationary pressures and promoting a flexible exchange rate.
“The ultimate aim down the line which we all know is that we desire a highly productive dynamic, broad-based or inclusive economy, upper middle-income economy by 2030,’’ said Dr Chipika.
“So, whatsoever we do with policies or operations in whatever sector we are in, even as financiers, let’s not lose the thing that we want to achieve by 2030 or earlier.”
This year’s Banks and Banking Survey awards was themed: “Return of the Zimbabwe Dollar Transition to Normalcy”.
The survey was launched in 2009 and is held every year to analyse key ratios, as well as the balance sheet sizes and profitability of all registered commercial banks and building societies operating in the country.
The event saw Ecobank being awarded the overall winner, POSB as first runner up and NMBZ second runner up.
Steward Bank was the most innovative bank, FBC won the most sustainable CSR programme, while CBZ grabbed the mobile platform of the year award.