THE Kwacha yesterday continued its downward trend against the United
States dollar as financial analyst, Maambo Haamaundu urged the
Government to step up its efforts in building public confidence.
As the Kwacha traded at a new low of K7.40 against the dollar, the first in the history of Zambia, Mr Haamaundu said the Government should immediately address the bottlenecks affecting the deteriorating perceptions of the Zambian economy by building public confidence.
In an interview in Lusaka yesterday, Mr Haamaundu said the continued depreciation of the Kwacha would push up the cost of production, inflation and fuel prices, thereby pushing up the poverty levels.
Mr Haamaundu said it was important for the Government to start building investor, donor and public confidence in general.
‘‘What we are seeing is that public confidence has gone down because there is no one from the authority telling us where the economy is going.
“The Government must begin to speak to us on which direction the economy was heading in order to build the public confidence,’’ he said.
Mr Haamaundu said if the situation was left unattended to, the country might end up facing a similar situation like Zimbabwe did.
He said there was need for a stronger voice so as to ensure confidence was restored in the economy.
Meanwhile, a check by Times of Zambia in Lusaka at Golden Coin Bureau De Change showed that the local unit was trading around K7.00/7.140 against the greenback.
At Interbank, the Kwacha had hit its lowest mark at K7.400 but the Bank of Zambia intervened to bring down to K6.470/6.470 as at 12 hours yesterday.
At Standard Chartered Bank, the local unit was trading around K6.8850/7.0225 against the dollar.
Market activities monitored across selected Bureaux de Change in Ndola, indicated that the local unit traded between K7.10/K7.20 against the much sought after greenback. From the previous day close of K7.0/K7.10, the local unit was eminently under pressure and broke the key barrier of K7.20 before the stroke of midday.
This is according to activities monitored at UniFinance and Walk Tall Bureaux de Change.
However, at Standard Chartered Bank, the local currency seemingly held firm against the dollar trading at K7 before noon.
The local unit had significantly also appreciated against the British pound trading K9.50
Times of Zambia