FINANCE minister Patrick Chinamasa is finalising the composition of the new Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe (RBZ) board and will announce it before the end of the year, businessdigest has established.
Speaking on the sidelines of the inauguration of the PTA Bank Harare regional office on Wednesday, RBZ governor John Mangudya told businessdigest that Chinamasa is finalising the composition of the new board.
“The finance minister is finalising the new board and is carrying out due diligence,” Mangudya said. “There will be a new board in place by the end of the year.”
The board will replace the one that was chaired by former RBZ governor Gideon Gono whose tenure expired in April.
Inaugurating the bank’s regional office, Chinamasa appealed to PTA Bank to open lines of credit for the productive sector.
“My biggest headache at the moment is that I do not have access to credit lines for the productive sectors — agriculture, mining, tourism and manufacturing,” Chinamasa said. “I would welcome more lines of credit to the productive sectors.”
He said interest rates on funding ranging between 12 to 25% are not viable given that the country is operating in a multi-currency regime.
Chinamasa commended PTA Bank for approving a credit facility worth US$75 million in June this year for the expansion of cement company PPC and appealed to the bank to open similar
facilities to other productive sectors.
He assured the bank that the government is currently servicing the country’s private sector debt which amounts to US$1,9 billion.
“If you have any challenges in our relationship, please let us know so that we smoothen and overcome those challenges,” Chinamasa said.
PTA Bank president Admassu Tadesse said the bank has injected nearly US$500 million in Zimbabwe in the form of trade and project finance.
He said the bank has embarked on its five-year plan which began last year.
Tadesse said the bank has grown by 30% annually for the last six years. He said that the bank now handled the Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (Comesa) Infrastructure Fund, signaling the bank’s growth.
The Harare regional office is the third branch the bank has opened after its headquarters in Bujumbura and its Nairobi office. The Harare office services Malawi, Zambia, Mauritius and Seychelles.