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Indian Rupee to be legal tender in Zimbabwe

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Harare, Jan 29 (IANS) Zimbabwe’s central bank Wednesday said it would add the Indian Rupee to the basket of currencies to be circulated in the country.

The decision has been taken keeping in view the growing trade and investment ties between the two countries, said the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe.

Zimbabwe no longer has its own currency. The southern African country abandoned its local currency, the Zimbabwean dollar, in 2009 after it had been ravaged by hyperinflation, and introduced a basket of foreign currencies dominated by the US dollar.

“We wish to advise exporters and the general transacting public that in addition to opening of accounts denominated in Botswana Pula, British Sterling Pound, Euro, South African Rand or United States Dollar, individuals and corporates can also open accounts denominated in the Australian Dollar (AUD), Chinese Yuan (CYN), Indian Rupee (INR) and Japanese Yen,” said the Bank.

India-Zimbabwe trade was $177 million, with balance of trade heavily in favour of India.

In a statement, Acting Governor of the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe Charity Dhliwayo also said Wednesday’s decision should put to rest the widespread speculation surrounding a re-introduction of the Zim-dollar.

“As such, the Reserve Bank, in close collaboration with the Government, has no plans to re-introduce the Zim-dollar as widely speculated,” said the central bank.

In his annual budget statement last December, Zimbabwe’s Finance Minister Patrick Chinamasa said the multiple currency system is to stay for the foreseeable future.

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