HARARE – A fresh wave of system and policy challenges in Zimbabwe’s banking and financial services sector is threatening to further heamorrhage Zimbabwe’s ailing economy, ENN reports. The development comes after government’s arbitrary introduction of new laws to govern operations of mobile money operators.
Consumers and businesses spent the weekend counting their losses after a government induced disruption of mobile money services through a politically veiled press statement released by Zimbabwe’s Secretary of Information Nick Mangwana announcing the suspension of mobile money services. As consumers tried to secure their mobile money funds through transacting, most systems failed to cope and some were offline, leading to unusually high transaction failures.
In 2008 Zimbabwe suffered a financial services collapse which led to a record breaking hyper inflation and the extinction of it’s local currency and the adoption of a multi- currency system in 2009. The latest policy interventions are a mirror of how former Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe Governor Gideon Gono tried to address Zimbabwe’s monetary challenges in 2008, and failed.
In the informal sector, most traders are not accepting any payments made in local currency and through mobile money platforms for their goods and services, citing uncertainties in the local currency and in the exchange rate ,which are a major financial threat to their small businesses. On the parallel market, the Zimbabwean dollar continues to lose value against all major currencies, signalling a national currency in free-fall.