Harare, (New Ziana) – The Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe (RBZ) on Tuesday set a new allocation record at the weekly foreign currency auction as demand peaks ahead of the festive season, surpassing last week’s high as the local dollar marginally depreciated against the greenback.
The central bank allocated US$33.35 million to bidders, the highest amount since introduction of the system in June, beating last week’s high of US$32.96 million.
At Tuesday’s trade, the Zimbabwe dollar traded at $81.88, a depreciation of six cents from last week.
The highest rate on offer for both the main and small to medium enterprises auctions, was $90 while the lowest was 80.
Of the record allocation to 410 bidders, the main auction got US$31.19 million while SMEs got US$2.15 million.
Presenting the 2021 national budget last week, Finance and Economic Development Minister, Mthuli Ncube said the market had now largely embraced the official exchange rate instead of relying on the black market.
The parallel market is trading at between $95 and $108 depending on the method of transfer.
“The parallel market exchange rate premium, which had risen to more than 300 percent when the auction was introduced, has fallen to less than 10 percent, a tolerable parallel market premium based on international best practice,” said Professor Ncube.
In 2021, the exchange rate was expected to remain stable, he said, supported by the auction and improved supply of foreign currency as the economy and trade, pick up.