The incoming gold coins have been and continue to be a topical issue in Zimbabwe. They had been indicated to officially hit the market starting from Monday, the 25th of July 2022. As we speak now they are now available for purchase. An official announcement and a presser were done on the day. My colleague has extensively covered this gold coins subject before. Thus today I am mostly focusing on the press statement and some noteworthy talking points.

Let us look at the key details that emerged from the press statement.

Important Things To Know About The Mosi-Oa-Tunya Gold Coins

Initial Market Entry

They are now on the market and the initial batch comprises 2000 gold coins. The initial unit price was:

US$1823.80 or ZWL$805 745.35

It was also highlighted that the gold coins can also be purchased using Rands, Pula, Pounds, Euros, or Australian dollars.

Price Determination

Every day by 8 am, the RBZ will publish the gold coins unit prices for the day. The prices will be based on the previous day’s London Bullion Market Association (LMBA) PM Fix. Additional to that will be a 5 percent mark-up to factor in production and distribution costs.

Physical Characteristics

A single gold coin is denominated as 1 ounce, for now. That entails 22 carats which are 91.67 percent purity. The gold coins each have a round shape, measure 32 millimetres in diameter, 2.63 millimetres in thickness, and weigh 33.93 grams. The serial number is engraved on the edge of each gold coin.

Qualities

These gold coins have liquid asset status and also prescribed asset status. They can be accepted as collateral and are tradable as well. They can be bought back by the RBZ when indicated by the holder.

Bearer Certificate Security Features

When the gold coins are sold they are accompanied by a bearer certificate. That bearer certificate has several security features namely, relief background features, numbering, guilloche pattern border, guilloche pattern background, hologram feature, variable QR code, and security paper with a watermark.

Selling Arrangements

Buyer Categories

Domestic buyers, be it individuals or corporates (institutional investors included), can purchase the gold coins using local or foreign currency. However, for corporates, quantities may be restricted when deemed necessary. Non-resident buyers will only purchase the gold coins using any of the stipulated foreign currencies.

Exporting Entities

Exporters will purchase the gold coins using foreign currency drawing from their retained export portions. Those whose 2021 export receipts were below US$1 million will need Exchange Control approval. This will be for them to be able to use a portion of their surrender portion payable using the local currency when purchasing the gold coins.

Local Banks

Local banks are yet to be allowed to purchase gold coins for their portfolios. The RBZ will probably or may allow this in the future. As for now, the banks can only get gold coins from the RBZ for onward selling to customers on behalf of RBZ.

What Is Not Allowed

The RBZ will not permit banks to lend for purposes of gold coin purchases. This is because it will take a toll on banks’ ability to settle their transaction at the RBZ. Liquidation of blocked funds for purposes of purchasing gold coins will not be allowed as well.

3 Easy To Understand Details About What These Gold Coins Are: A Summary

Last night someone asked about this and made me realize not everyone yet fully understands. Here are some simply-put descriptions of what they are all about:

Store Of Value

These gold coins can be likened to an asset which is essentially a store of value. This is because the prices of gold are more or less stable and even increase over time. There are of course other variables at play but that is the basic principle. Purchasing them and keeping them is a buffer or shield against inflation. What is its value you might wonder? A single gold coin is 1 ounce – purity level being 91.67 percent. This translates to 22 carats. By the way, a carat is a measure of the purity of gold; pure gold is 24 carats.

Purchasing And Tradability

You can purchase the gold coins using either foreign currency or Zimbabwean dollars. They are tradable too, meaning you can sell them if you choose. Additionally, you can use the gold coins to transact e.g. as payment for a service or product. You can even use them as collateral when looking to access loans.

Identification And Ownership

Once you purchase these gold coins you will be issued with a bearer certificate. This is basically like a certificate of ownership proving that you are indeed the rightful owner. Every coin has a unique serial number as well. The certificate will be related to those serial numbers. You can keep the gold coins yourself or you can have a bank keep them for you.

I am sure you now have a clearer picture of what is going on now that the gold coins are a go. It was indicated that more gold coins will be released informed by demand and agents’ guidance. There are still lots of concerns about the veracity of this gold coins policy. The obvious one is of course that it is for a select few. The vast majority of Zimbabweans cannot afford to spend over US$1800 to get a gold coin. That is why the true intentions behind introducing the gold coins are still a topical discussion. It would be great to hear your thoughts in the comments below.