The Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe (RBZ) has banned third country foreign payments, except for fuel, in measures to facilitate critical transactions to keep the economy going smoothly and encourage remittance of export proceeds back to the country.
The exemption on fuel would ensure the country avoids economic freeze given the critical importance of fuel in all economic activities. Notably, the ban makes it inconvenient for economic agents to keep export proceeds offshore to avoid the central bank’s surrender requirements.
On Wednesday last week, the apex bank issued payment exemption guidelines on offshore drawdowns relating to financing of payments for marketable commodities such as tobacco and cotton.
Such exemptions come as banks have been instructed not to lend to government, individuals and corporates according to presidential resolutions announced on Saturday.
Economists believe policy measures reflect a case by case enhancement and refinement by the Government, through the RBZ, of measures aimed at eliminating the malfeasance in the economy.