Zimbabwe’s Civil Servants Demand US Dollar Salaries Amid New Currency Concerns


The Progressive Teachers Union of Zimbabwe (PTUZ) has voiced significant concerns over the newly introduced Zimbabwe Gold (ZiG) currency, advocating for salaries to be paid in US dollars instead. Takavafira Zhou, the union’s president, expressed skepticism about the ZiG’s viability, highlighting its lack of acceptance across the Southern African Development Community (SADC).

Zhou remarked to TellZim News that the economic environment in Zimbabwe is not conducive to the adoption of a local currency, citing “low productivity in key sectors of the economy.” He emphasized that for a local currency to be sustainable, it must be widely accepted both regionally and within various government sectors.

“Our conviction is clear: Zimbabwe is not ready for a local currency. Paying civil servants in ZiG could be catastrophic as it may soon prove to be unviable with limited longevity and applicability,” Zhou stated.

He further criticized the government’s approach, noting the continued requirement for payments in US dollars for many government services, despite the introduction of ZiG. This, according to Zhou, is an indicator of the government’s lack of confidence in its own currency.

Amid these currency concerns, Development Economist Prosper Chitambara suggested that the government should define a timeline for the transition to ZiG for all government services, including fuel payments. “Fifty percent of taxes are planned to be paid in ZiG soon, but a clear benchmark is needed for when other services will follow,” Chitambara explained.

He also noted the high demand for US dollars continues, fueled by the significant difference in exchange rates between the official and black market rates, creating notable arbitrage opportunities.

The Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe recently admitted that ZiG would not be recognized internationally in the short term and is focusing efforts on strengthening the currency for future convertibility.

This unfolding situation highlights the challenges Zimbabwe faces in its de-dollarization efforts and the broader implications for economic stability and confidence among its civil servants.


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