Business & Finance

Botswana offers cash-strapped Zimbabwe $600 million of loans: report

HARARE, Botswana has offered to lend Zimbabwe $600 million to support its diamond industry and local private firms, a state-owned newspaper reported on Tuesday, amid a severe dollar crunch in the southern African nation.

There are few signs the flow of foreign currency is improving in Zimbabwe after it ditched a discredited 1:1 dollar peg for its dollar-surrogate bond notes and electronic dollars, merging them into a lower-value transitional currency called the RTGS dollar.

James Manzou, Zimbabwe's secretary for foreign affairs, said President Emmerson Mnangagwa and Botswana's President Mokgweetsi Masisi are expected to sign the loan agreements in Harare on Thursday.

The loan will consist of $500 million dollars for Zimbabwe's diamond industry and a further $100 million to help private companies, whose operations have been hamstrung by the dollar shortage, the state-owned Herald newspaper said.

Zimbabwe is also appreciative of the $500 million diamond facility offered to it by Botswana, Manzou said.

Source: Nam News Network