Zimbabwe Slashes 10 Zeros from Currency
By Google News
second time in two years, Zimbabwe’s central
bank is slashing zeros off its largely worthless
currency. This time 10 zeros will go, making $10
billion equal to $1.
The central bank’s governor Gideon Gono chopped
10 zeros off the Zimbabwe dollar and
reintroduded coins which have been obsolete for
The highest denomination of Zimbabwe currency is
currently 100 billion.
After the currency announcement, President
Robert Mugabe warned in a televised event
Wednesday that he will declare a state of
emergency if prices continue to rise.
Officially inflation is at 2.2 million percent,
but private sector economists estimate it is at
least five times higher. Prices double every few
The purchase of a small packet of cookies can
easily cost 400 billion Zimbabwe dollars. Bread,
when it is available, is about 200 billion
dollars. A few every day items can cost
trillions of dollars, and houses for sale are
advertised in quadrillions.
Comparing costs with South African groceries,
using a combination of official and black market
rates, groceries in Zimbabwe are between three
and four times the cost for the same goods in
Mr. Mugabe’s warnings about price increases came
as South African president Thabo Mbeki arrived
in Harare to mediate talks between the Movement
for Democratic Change and ZANU-PF.
Mr. Mbeki will meet Mr. Mugabe, whom the
opposition Movement for Democratic Change, or
MDC, has accused of stealing the election
earlier this year.
The MDC’s Morgan Tsvangirai easily beat Mr.
Mugabe in the first round of the presidential
poll but withdrew from the second round because
of violence against his supporters.
“We are still negotiating, we want to succeed,”
Mr. Mugabe said in his televised address.”You
find room for compromise but sometimes
compromise is difficult.”
Central bank governor Gono said the new currency
will be launched Friday.