In 2009, Zimbabwe suffered the impact of hyperinflation. Its currency, the Zimbabwean Dollar (Z$), soared by 5bn%. It was a disaster for the cash-oriented society, and shortages became commonplace. The fallout ultimately led to the abandonment of Z$. In its place, Zimbabwe adopted the US Dollar (USD) as its de facto currency, so much so that a cottage industry has emerged to mend old, used cash.
This isn’t a sustainable solution, though, and Zimbabwe is working to discourage people from using cash. Banks and mobile money operators in the region are investing heavily into peer-to-peer (P2P) partnerships to facilitate digital funds transfers between two parties without cash.
There is a sense of urgency for more digital payments in Zimbabwe, and the wheels are turning. With its high mobile penetration rate of 96% more and its ‘National Financial Inclusiveness Strategy’, the adoption of alternative payment methods are set to rise in the coming years.
United States dollar
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