The central bank governor, John Mangudya, issued a brief statement in which he indicated that the credit ban reversal would not benefit entities that he said had abused loan facilities.

Mangudya said RBZ’s Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU) was investigating the unnamed entities.  

 “Further to the circular the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe…issued to banks on 9 May 2022, the Bank wishes to advise the public that the temporary suspension of lending services by banks has been lifted with immediate effect,” noted the RBZ statement.

“The lifting of the suspension does not apply to those entities that are under investigation by the Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU) for abusing loan facilities to the detriment of the economy. The FIU has accordingly advised all banks of the affected entities,” said the central bank in the statement.

A week and a half ago, President Mugabe ordered banks to stop lending—among other monetary measures—as a way to arrest galloping inflation generated by speculative developments on the parallel currency market.

The decree seems to have been driven by the assumption that lending was overfeeding the currency market with money, resulting in inflationary trends.

While the official rate of the local dollar to the greenback was around 165, the black market rate rattled between 330 and 400.

Industrialists, economists and the general public expressed shock at the lending ban by President Mnangagwa and warned that it would starve the economy of money and cause turbulence.

Politician and former Finance minister, Tendai Biti, called it “absolute madness” and described it as illegal.

“Finance is the oxygen of industry. The business of banking is lending. Banning it is unconstitutional,” said Biti.