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Zimbabwe Finance Ministry Rejects Central Bank's Appeal For Financial Aid to Settle Debts

  • Gibbs Dube

Sources said the RBZ recently wrote to the ministry asking for at more than US$5 million to keep its creditors at bay while waiting for Parliament to draft a law allowing the government to take over its debts

Zimbabwe's Finance Ministry has turned down a request by the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe for help in paying creditors and meeting downsizing costs, sources said.

Government sources said the Reserve Bank recently wrote to the ministry asking for more than US$5 million to keep its creditors at bay pending passage by Parliament of a law that would allow the government to take over its US$1.2 billion debts.

The RBZ had also asked for US$20 million to fund severance packages for 1,600 workers being laid off in a major restructuring of the troubled institution.

Financial sources said the central bank owes creditors more than US$1.2 billion, mainly from procurements on behalf of the previous government for various programs.

Attorney Davison Kanokanga, representing RBZ creditor Farmtech Supplies and Implements which is owed US$2.1 million, said the RBZ has to meet its financial obligations even if it is being protected by government.

Economic commentator Bekithemba Mhlanga told VOA Studio 7 reporter Gibbs Dube that the beleaguered central bank's creditors will eventually be paid off by taxpayers.

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