RBZ governor, Gideon Gono, said in a notice on Monday: “Further take notice that the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe has commenced proceedings for the liquidation of the institution on account of the institution’s failure to comply with minimum capital requirements, critical solvency, liquidity and viability challenges.”
According to recent reports, an RBZ investigation discovered that Interfin was heavily exposed with US$105 489 614 in loans and advances against a paltry US$3 567 in its Real Time Gross Settlement (RTGS) account. It had US$137 422 in vault cash and US$98 483 in its Nostros account, rendering the bank technically insolvent.
“Notice is hereby given that Interfin Bank Limited has today been placed under the management of a curator for a period of six months in terms of the Banking Act (Chapter 24:20),” he said. “This follows a determination that the bank is facing critical liquidity challenges. Further take notice that Mr Peter Bailey of KPMG Chartered Accountants has been appointed the curator of Interfin Bank Limited for a period of six months.”
The closure of the locally owned banks comes at a time when Youth, Indigenisation and Economic Empowerment minister, Saviour Kasukuwere, stepped up efforts to force foreign banks to cede the majority of their shares to locals.
Gono has warned that forcing the banks to give away their shares would spell doom to the troubled Zimbabwean economy.
It would also be a reminder of the 2003/4 banking collapse where 13 out of 25 financial institutions were either placed under curatorship, liquidates or put under administration in just six months.