Zimbabwe’s annual inflation rate rose 1.38 percent to 4.29 percent in July 2018, latest figures from the Zimbabwe National Statistics Agency (ZImStats) show.
This was a significant upturn from the June 2018 figure of 2.91 percent.
On a monthly basis, the inflation rose 1.03 percentage points to 0.98 percent.
“The month-on-month inflation rate in July 2018 was 0,98 percent gaining 1,03 percentage points on the June 2018 rate of -0,05 percent,” said ZimStats in its monthly update.
Some observers have attributed the quickening inflation to the continuance of the parallel currency market.
Although the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe (RBZ) has maintained the US dollar-bond note official rate at 1:1, cash shortages have resulted in a thriving black market for physical currency, both bond notes and United States dollar notes.
It is largely expected that the high demand for US dollars by both companies and individuals continues to push up the exchange rate.
Econet Wireless says its extraordinary general meeting to consider a proposed $130 million capital raise will go ahead as planned on Friday, setting itself on a collision course with the Zimbabwe Stock Exchange which directed the company to postpone it until ‘certain technical issues’ are clarified.
The rights issue has generated some controversy largely due to its requirement that shareholders pay abroad to subscribe, a move that analysts say would disadvantage pension funds and other minorities who might not be able to follow their rights. Econet says it needs to raise the cash offshore to pay off its external debt, which it has increasingly struggled to amortise due to Zimbabwe’s foreign currency crisis.
ZSE chair Caroline Sandura said in a statement issued late on Wednesday the bourse asked Econet to defer its vote on the transaction.
But Econet countered with its own statement in which it said it had, along with the central bank, put up a facility to allow local shareholders to participate in the rights offer.
It said a rights offer account has been opened with Econet’s wholly-owned subsidiary Steward Bank, where local shareholders would deposit the proceeds of the rights offer in accordance with the timetable published in the company’s circular dated 17 January 2017. The underwriter, Econet Global, will pay the equivalent of the amount contributed by the resident shareholder to the international receiving bank, Afreximbank.
“Those resident shareholders who follow their rights by paying into the designated local account shall be deemed as having discharged their obligations as set out in the Rights Offer Circular and shall be entitled to the issue and allotment of their Rights Offer shares,” said Econet.
“In the circumstances, members are advised that the extraordinary general meeting shall proceed as published in the circular,” it added, saying members should disregard “any notice to the contrary not coming from the company.”
ZSE’s Sandura is yet to respond to the latest move by Econet.