We reported in earlier issues that the company that had been supplying banknote paper to Zimbabwe had stopped shipments due to international pressure. Opponents had agued that the shipments aided the government in oppressing its people. Could this boycott be the last straw that brings down the government? According to reports, with no cash to pay its troops, the military is growing restless. -EditorThe Zimbabwean government was today struggling to find enough cash to pay its workers, and more importantly the military, after it was forced to severely cut back on printing money because sanctions severed its supply of banknote paper from Europe.
Officials involved in the printing of money said the regime was fearful that the presses could be shut down altogether if further political pressure causes the withdrawal of software licences used to design and print the notes.
On Monday, the central bank issued a $100bn note, the highest denomination to date but worth only about 7p, printed on what remains of stocks of the German-supplied paper.
The source said the firm had been told that new supplies of currency paper were coming from Malaysia but it was unable to meet the current demand for cash created by hyperinflation that economists estimated was running at about 40m%.
The speed of the devaluation can also been seen in the watermarks. Hold a $750,000 note up to the light and the watermark shows the paper was intended to be used for a $1,000 bill. The $25bn note has a $500 watermark.
To read the complete article, see: Soldiers await pay as Zimbabwe runs out of paper to print money (http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2008/jul/23/zimbabwe)
Wayne Homren, Editor
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