The Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe (RBZ) is set to commence the trading of gold coins this month in a bid to introduce an alternative store of value in the market amid optimism that the coins will impact the market positively.
The decision to introduce the gold coins was reached by the central bank's Monetary Policy Committee meeting on June 24 2022.
In a statement, the RBZ governor John Mangudya said the gold coins shall be called the Mosi- Oa Tunya Gold coin with the following characteristics of one troy ounce in terms of weight, purity of 22 carats and a serial number.
"Upon purchase the buyer shall take physical possession of the coin and be issued with a Bearer Ownership Certificate.
"The buyer or holder of the coin may opt to place it in the custody of bankers of own choice in which case a safe custody certificate /receipt will be issued. The coin will have liquid asset status," he said.
The central bank governor said the coin will be capable of being easily converted to cash and will be tradable locally and internationally as well as being used for transactional purposes.
It will also carry a Prescribed Asset Status enabling institutional investors to use it to meet regulatory requirements for prescribed asset investments.
"The coin may be used as security for loans and credit facilities. At the instance of the holder, the bank will buy back the coin.
"The gold coins will be available for sale to members of the public from July 25 2022, in both local currency ZW$ and US$ at a price based on the prevailing international price of gold and the cost of production," said Mangudya.
He added that the coins will be sold through the RBZ and its subsidiaries, Fidelity Gold Refinery Private Limited and Aurex (Private) Limited local banks and selected international banking partners on strict grounds of Know Your Customer (KYC) principles.
Investments expert, Batanai Matsika, who also heads research for stockbroking firm, Morgan & Co, last week told the media that the gold coin was a welcome development in a market starved of investment options and will help investors hedge against inflation.
"For a long time, the market did not have many investment options and this is a new asset class," The thinking was inspired by the need to come up with an instrument that addresses the inflation problems in the economy where purchasing power has been eroded.
"From what we are gathering, this is going to be a store value," he said.