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'$5,000 withdrawal limit not enough'

by Staff reporter
10 Feb 2022 at 05:31hrs | Views
DEPOSITORS have said the $5 000 weekly withdrawal limit was not enough as the amount does not meet their cash needs such as daily transport cost for members and cash rentals being demanded by landlords.

On Monday the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe (RBZ) increased cash withdrawal limits to $5 000 per week from $2 000 while mobile money transactions have been reviewed from $5 000 to $10 000 per transaction.

Under the new framework, mobile money users will be allowed to transact up to $70 000 per week for person-to-person transaction and $25 000 from $20 000 per purchase transaction with a maximum of $100 000 per week in person to business transactions.

The measures are contained in the 2022 Monetary Policy Statement issued Monday and are meant to enhance ease of transacting by the banking public while broadly buttressing the use of the local currency.

RBZ governor, Dr John Mangudya, has urged all Zimbabweans to embrace the local currency to enhance growth saying its Zim-dollar usage has helped the economy to grow by 7,8 percent in 2021.

However, in separate interviews yesterday depositors in Bulawayo said while welcoming the review in withdrawal limits the RBZ figure was not adequate.

They said the $5 000 amount was still small considering that prices of basic commodities were increasing almost every month while other services were accessible on cash basis.

"Buying goods with cash is cheaper than using plastic money," said one of the depositors at ZB Bank.

"Also, payment of rentals needs forex and getting forex using cash is cheaper than using other means, which are bank transfer or mobile money."

Ms Mpilo Ndlovu who was at Stanbic Bank said she has no choice but to queue for cash each week in order to have adequate amount to buy forex as her landlord demands rentals in hard currency.

"Buying forex is cheaper when you have cash than RTGS," she said.

Others said the $5 000 limit was not enough for someone who comes from rural areas and needs more cash for public transport.

"It's now better than $2 000 but we were expecting the Government to review the limit maybe up to $10  000 because as we travel from the rural areas, the money ends up covering transport alone," said Mrs Sipho Bhebhe who was on queue at CABS.

The depositors said while withdrawal limits were also aimed at curbing speculative deals and illegal money change operations, the measure was punishing ordinary citizens.

"Money dealers should be handled by the law because now everyone has to queue many times a month to get money for different purposes especially transport and rentals because the Government is trying to address money laundering," said a depositor who preferred anonymity.

"People should be allowed to withdraw all their money as the amount we are earning are not enough and yet we need to pay for transport as different members of the family everyday".

Source - The Chronicle