Local banks have started creating separate Nostro Foreign Currency Accounts (FCAs) and Real Time Gross Settlement (RTGS) FCAs in line with a directive issued by the Central Bank early this month.
The Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe (RBZ) gave banks until mid this month to separate the two accounts as part of measures to preserve value for foreign currency earners.
Monetary authorities expect the measure to strengthen the multi-currency system for financial and price stability and to increase inflows of foreign currency.
CABS managing director Mr Simon Hammond said the bank was already processing the opening of accounts denominated in rand, United States dollar, euro, British pound and pula.
Mr Hammond said the Nostro FCAs would be opened in several categories, which suit the client’s nature of foreign currency receipts.
For example, a Nostro FCA would be created for export proceeds, offshore loan proceeds, offshore funds provided by a foreign investor and foreign currency cash deposits from local trade and foreign currency inflows into trust accounts.
Mr Hammond said other categories included non-resident Nostro FCAs funded from offshore sources by non-residents, individual Nostro FCAs funded from diaspora remittances, donations and foreign currency cash deposits.
CABS will also open accounts for non-governmental organisations, embassies and international organisations whose Nostro FCAs are funded with offshore funds.
“Please note that you will not be required to provide new documentation if you are already a customer,” he said.
“However, we will require a letter confirming whether the signing arrangements on the existing RTGS Foreign Currency Account will apply to the Nostro Foreign Currency Account.”
Before the directive, foreign currency allocation was controlled by the central bank through a priority list framework to ensure equitable distribution and guarantee availability for critical import requirements.
Government has since secured a loan facility from Afreximbank to guarantee the 1:1 convertibility value of RTGS balances into the US dollar and availability of the greenback for Nostro foreign currency accounts.