2022 Gold coin “Mosi-oa-Tunya” from ZIMBABWE
- July 28, 2022
ZIMBABWE has been suffering from endemic inflation for many years. In June 2022 alone, it amounted to 191%… Inherited from Robert MUGABE’s regime, it was for a time curbed by his successor, Emmerson MNANGAGWA. The latter had initially abolished the local currency and promulgated the US dollar as the only legal tender in the country. Then from June 2019, the Zimbabwean dollar was reintroduced (also called ZIM dollar).
But the spectre of inflation has reappeared in the country in recent months.
The pandemic has deprived the country of foreign currencies brought by the many tourists who used to visit the Victoria Falls area.
In addition, the country has been hit hard by inflation, some of which is imported. Indeed, Zimbabwe imports many foodstuffs which it still lacks, despite the end of the policy of expropriation of the white farmers, the real landowners of this country.
The RBZ is also selling gold coins, in order to raise the foreign exchange needed by the Reserve Bank of ZIMBABWE (national central bank) to defend the local currency and to reduce the money supply in circulation. The new coin has no face value. It is “worth” one ounce of gold, at the market price of gold and with a premium of 5% of its gold value.
It should be noted that ZIMBABWE is a gold producing country. In 2021, the national gold production is estimated at 30 tons of gold. This metal is usually one of the main sources of foreign exchange for the country along with diamonds and tourism.
In accordance with the resolution of the Monetary Policy Committee of July 24, 2022, the Central Bank of ZIMBABWE released the first batch of 2,000 Mosi-oa-Tunga gold coins on July 25, 2022. Local agents started selling the gold coins at the initial price of USD 1,823.8 per gold coin, or ZIM$ 805,745.35 (local currency).
The gold coins can also be purchased in currencies such as the South African rand, Botswana pula, Australian dollar, British pound and euro.
The Bank will publish the price of the Mosi-oa-Tunya gold coin before 8:00 a.m. each day, starting July 26, 2022. The price will be based on the previous day’s market price at the London Bullion Market Association (LBMA). A 5% premium will be added to cover the cost of production and distribution of the gold coins.
The Governor of the Reserve Bank of ZIMBABWE presenting the new gold coin
Diameter: 32 mm
Edge: plain with engraved serial number
Thickness: 2,63 mm
Value: The coin has no face value
it is worth its weight in gold (one ounce) + a 5% premium
Gold coins have the advantage of being a liquid asset. They are accepted as collateral. They are negotiable and numbered. The Central Bank can redeem these coins when the holder requests it.
Mosi-oa-Tunya” gold coins are sold with a bearer certificate. Each coin has security features. The bottom is embossed. The coins are individually numbered (on the edge), the edge has a guilloche pattern, holographic features and a variable QR Code. The certificate is printed on a security paper with watermark.
The point of view of the Expert:
Jean François FAURE from “AUCOFFRE.COM”
It is an asset more than a currency if we consider the 180 days delay which must be respected before reselling this token.
If it were to be considered as a currency, it would have a limited power of release and it does not have a legal tender even the RBZ publishes a daily rate based on the international price of an ounce of gold (+ 5% premium). It is therefore more of a financial product.
South Africa has gone further by marketing one ounce gold coins with legal tender.
For a French investor, this type of investment is considered as a token under French law. The taxation of gold tokens is more favorable than that applicable to listed gold coins.
However, this product will be difficult to access with an initial mintage of only 2,000 coins.
The experience of ZIMBABWE, which is in a delicate economic situation, is interesting and denotes in any case with the dominant doxa of the “all digital” which assimilates gold to a “barabarian relic”, according to the famous expression of KEYNES.
The following terms of sale are applied for the different buyers.
Domestic buyers, including individuals, can buy in local currency or foreign currency.
Domestic companies, including institutional investors, will be allowed to purchase gold coins in local or foreign currency, subject to quantitative restrictions where deemed necessary.
Exporting entities must purchase Mosi-oa-Tunya gold coins in foreign currency from their retained export shares. Notwithstanding this requirement, exporters whose annual export earnings in 2021 were less than US$1 million will need to obtain specific exchange control approval to be allowed to use a portion of their refund share payable in local currency to purchase gold coins.
Local banking institutions will not be allowed to purchase Mosi-oa-Tunya gold coins for their own portfolios until the Reserve Bank grants approval. Thus, for the time being, banks can only receive coins from the Reserve Bank for resale to their customers on behalf of the Reserve Bank.
Non-resident (international) buyers can only purchase Mosi-oaTunya gold coins in foreign currency. Gold coins are an alternative investment product for those who want to store value. Gold is a safe and secure reserve asset worldwide.
Under current law, the Reserve Bank will not allow banks to lend for the purpose of purchasing gold coins, as this would put pressure on the ability of banks to settle their transactions with the Reserve Bank.
In addition, the Bank will not allow the liquidation of blocked funds for the purpose of purchasing gold coins. Given that the government has already put in place a resolution framework to deal with blocked funds under the Finance Act, No. 7 of 2021.
The Bank will put additional gold coins on the market based on domestic and international demand.
Sources: Reserve Bank ZIMBABWE and NUMISMAG.