Zimbabwe’s central bank plans to sell gold coins to the public from July 25 as a store of value to stabilise the nation’s tumbling exchange rate and offer an alternative to the US dollar, which is in high demand.
The one-troy-ounce gold coins will be called Mosi oa-Tunya Gold Coin, Governor John Mangudya said. The term means Smoke that Thunders, a reference to Victoria Falls, the world’s greatest sheet of falling water, which traverses Zimbabwe and Zambia.
The gold coins will “be available for sale to the public in both local currency and US dollars and other foreign currencies at a price based on the prevailing international price of gold and the cost of production,” he said in an emailed statement.
The 22-carat coin will be identified by a serial number and can be easily converted to cash, tradeable locally and internationally and used to transact.
The coin forms part of measures to deal with a currency crisis that’s seen the annual inflation rate jump to 192% in June and a sharp depreciation in the Zimbabwean dollar, which has lost more than two-thirds of its value against the dollar this year.
Investors tend to flock to gold in times of wars and crises as it is seen as a safe-haven asset.