By Pretty Chavango
Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe (RBZ) Governor Dr John Mangudya says the bank has received an overwhelming response from looters desiring to return externalised foreign currency and assets in line with President Mnangagwa’s three months moratorium.
Delivering his 2018 Monetary Policy Statement, Dr Mangudya said bank deposits are already increasing on account of funds being channelled into the formal system, as corporates and individuals take heed of the amnesty.
“The Bank is encouraged by the overwhelming response from Zimbabweans desiring to comply with the amnesty arrangements. The responses have been positive from both individuals and corporates in respect of foreign currency (and not decommissioned or demonetised local currency) that was externalized by commission or omission or under the liberalized Exchange Control framework with such foreign currency banked offshore or used to acquire foreign assets.
“The response to date demonstrates the willingness by corporates and individuals to comply with these arrangements,” he said.
The RBZ Governor could however not disclose the current amount of externalised money which had been returned saying the RBZ would reveal the total amount by end of February when the amnesty period comes to an end.
The Bank is currently offering 7% tax-free savings bonds for funds to be repatriated under the amnesty dispensation where funds were externalised under the auspices of free funds.
The Amnesty which pertains to externalised foreign currency and assets bought outside Zimbabwe using foreign currency that belonged to Zimbabwe through acts or commissions such as export of any currency above permissible thresholds; trade mis-invoicing by importers to evade customs duties, VAT, or income taxes or operation of illegal offshore bank accounts by individuals and companies funded from Zimbabwe among other given reasons does not affect funds and assets acquired by Zimbabweans in the diaspora.
Meanwhile, in an effort to facilitate inward investments going forward, Zimbabweans in the diaspora can now open Diaspora Investment Accounts with local banks of their choice.
The accounts which shall be for savings/investment purposes or for holding funds earmarked for undertaking investment projects in Zimbabwe shall be funded from offshore and shall be entitled to a 7% Diaspora Remittance Incentive from the RBZ over and above the interest offered by the bank. These accounts shall be ring-fenced against commingling with RTGS money.
picture courtesy of The Source