Finance and Economic Development minister Professor Mthuli Ncube has said government is forcing business operators to trade in local currency with a move to penalize those who defy the directive on course.
In an interview with a ZTN, Prof Ncube said government’s objective was to achieve mono-currency and would pull all strings to make sure the United States dollars is pulled back.
“Of course, as Government we are forcing compliance. We will be introducing penalties for those who deviate. We recognise that we are in transition. We will get there. Our objective is to achieve mono-currency. We will make sure that the US dollar is pulled back. They are violating the law. We want to enforce the use of the Zimbabwe dollar,” said Prof Ncube.
He added that the US dollars continue to be used due to the shortage of the Zimbabwean dollars in circulation, a situation he said would be addressed through the introduction of bigger denominations.
“We also know that one of the reasons why the US dollar continues to be used is that we do not have enough Zimbabwe dollars in circulation. There is a cash deficit of domestic currency. That is why we have said we want to introduce more cash in a very prudent way. We have up to $5 notes now. We will move to $10, $20 and sometime in the future if we need a higher denomination, we will make an analysis and determine. There is no urgency in that,” he added.
Government scrapped the multi-currency regime last year introducing mono-currency but the market is struggling with the local currency due to inflationary pressures.
This has seen fast food outlets and pharmacies re-adopting US dollars as an extra payment options, a move that has led to complains from other players who feel sidelined by the selective easing of rules by the central government.