Moscow, Jan 16 (IECurrentAffairs) Sofya Grebenkina -the sharp depreciation of Zimbabwe’s national currency is a direct result of restrictive measures imposed on the country by the European Union and the United States, Zimbabwean President Emmerson Mnangagwa told Sputnik.
Since the early 2000s, Zimbabwe has been under sanctions imposed by the United States and the European Union over violations of human rights and democratic norms under the presidency of former leader Robert Mugabe.
The restrictions had resulted in a collapse of foreign loans and investments in the economy of the African nation. The prolonged economic crisis in the country caused its authorities to use the US dollar instead of its national currency.
“I am sure you are aware that as a result of the sanctions imposed on us, those sanctions were able to collapse our own currency,” Mnangagwa stated.
The peak of the inflation occurred in 2008, with the inflation rate soaring to 98 percent daily at its worst. The country was able to begin stabilizing economically after the Government of National Unity was formed in 2009. However, Zimbabwe has lately had to grapple with dollar shortages and, as a result, with shortages of some imported goods.
The Zimbabwean president said he had recently received positive signals from some of the EU countries regarding sanctions.
“I have had discussions with France, Belgium, Italy at a bilateral level and with Germany … I believe that the signal coming from these capitals is positive … But the ball is in their court. On our part, we are doing everything possible to have both political and economic reforms,” Mnangagwa said.
The president conceded that the European Union had “relaxed most of the sanctions they had on Zimbabwe.”
“But I believe that the best they should do, in my view, is to remove … totally [all] sanctions … We appeal to all these countries that have sanctions on us that they should remove them because we don’t see any reason why or any cause why they should continue to have those sanctions imposed on us,” Mnangagwa said.
A number of Zimbabwean top political figures are still targeted by US and EU sanctions. EU sanctions, in particular, focus on seven people including Mugabe and his wife, and one entity, Zimbabwe Defence Industries