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  • Zimbabwe's economy depends heavily on its mining and agriculture sectors. Following a contraction from 1998 to 2008, the economy recorded real growth of more than 10% per year in the period 2010-13, before falling below 3% in the period 2014-17, due to poor harvests, low diamond revenues, and decreased investment. Lower mineral prices, infrastructure and regulatory deficiencies, a poor investment climate, a large public and external debt burden, and extremely high government wage expenses impede the country’s economic performance.

  •  

  • Until early 2009, the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe (RBZ) routinely printed money to fund the budget deficit, causing hyperinflation. Adoption of a multi-currency basket in early 2009 - which allowed currencies such as the Botswana pula, the South Africa rand, and the US dollar to be used locally - reduced inflation below 10% per year. In January 2015, as part of the government’s effort to boost trade and attract foreign investment, the RBZ announced that the Chinese renmimbi, Indian rupee, Australian dollar, and Japanese yen would be accepted as legal tender in Zimbabwe, though transactions were predominantly carried out in US dollars and South African rand until 2016, when the rand’s devaluation and instability led to near-exclusive use of the US dollar. The government in November 2016 began releasing bond notes, a parallel currency legal only in Zimbabwe which the government claims will have a one-to-one exchange ratio with the US dollar, to ease cash shortages. Bond notes began trading at a discount of up to 10% in the black market by the end of 2016.

  •  

  • Zimbabwe’s government entered a second Staff Monitored Program with the IMF in 2014 and undertook other measures to reengage with international financial institutions. Zimbabwe repaid roughly $108 million in arrears to the IMF in October 2016, but financial observers note that Zimbabwe is unlikely to gain new financing because the government has not disclosed how it plans to repay more than $1.7 billion in arrears to the World Bank and African Development Bank. International financial institutions want Zimbabwe to implement significant fiscal and structural reforms before granting new loans. Foreign and domestic investment continues to be hindered by the lack of land tenure and titling, the inability to repatriate dividends to investors overseas, and the lack of clarity regarding the government’s Indigenization and Economic Empowerment Act.

  • GDP (purchasing power parity):This entry gives the gross domestic product (GDP) or value of all final goods and services produced within a nation in a given year. A nation's GDP at purchasing power parity (PPP) exchange rates is the sum value of all goods and services produced in the country valued at prices prevailing in the United States in the year noted. This is the measure most economists prefer when looking at per-capita welfare and when comparing living conditions or use of resources across countries. The measur . . . more

  • $34.27 billion (2017 est.)

  • $33.04 billion (2016 est.)

  • $32.82 billion (2015 est.)

  • note: data are in 2017 dollars

  • country comparison to the world: 127

  • GDP (official exchange rate):This entry gives the gross domestic product (GDP) or value of all final goods and services produced within a nation in a given year. A nation's GDP at official exchange rates (OER) is the home-currency-denominated annual GDP figure divided by the bilateral average US exchange rate with that country in that year. The measure is simple to compute and gives a precise measure of the value of output. Many economists prefer this measure when gauging the economic power an economy maintains vis- . . . more

  • $17.64 billion (2017 est.)

  • GDP - real growth rate:This entry gives GDP growth on an annual basis adjusted for inflation and expressed as a percent. The growth rates are year-over-year, and not compounded.

  • 3.7% (2017 est.)

  • 0.7% (2016 est.)

  • 1.4% (2015 est.)

  • country comparison to the world: 93

  • GDP - per capita (PPP):This entry shows GDP on a purchasing power parity basis divided by population as of 1 July for the same year.

  • $2,300 (2017 est.)

  • $2,300 (2016 est.)

  • $2,300 (2015 est.)

  • note: data are in 2017 dollars

  • country comparison to the world: 203

  • Gross national saving:Gross national saving is derived by deducting final consumption expenditure (household plus government) from Gross national disposable income, and consists of personal saving, plus business saving (the sum of the capital consumption allowance and retained business profits), plus government saving (the excess of tax revenues over expenditures), but excludes foreign saving (the excess of imports of goods and services over exports). The figures are presented as a percent of GDP. A negative . . . more

  • 23.3% of GDP (2017 est.)

  • 19.1% of GDP (2016 est.)

  • 8% of GDP (2015 est.)

  • country comparison to the world: 74

  • GDP - composition, by end use:This entry shows who does the spending in an economy: consumers, businesses, government, and foreigners. The distribution gives the percentage contribution to total GDP of household consumption, government consumption, investment in fixed capital, investment in inventories, exports of goods and services, and imports of goods and services, and will total 100 percent of GDP if the data are complete. household consumption consists of expenditures by resident households, and by nonprofit insti . . .more

  • household consumption: 77.6% (2017 est.)

  • government consumption: 24% (2017 est.)

  • investment in fixed capital: 12.6% (2017 est.)

  • investment in inventories: 0% (2017 est.)

  • exports of goods and services: 25.6% (2017 est.)

  • imports of goods and services: -39.9% (2017 est.)

  • GDP - composition, by sector of origin:This entry shows where production takes place in an economy. The distribution gives the percentage contribution of agriculture, industry, and services to total GDP, and will total 100 percent of GDP if the data are complete. Agriculture includes farming, fishing, and forestry. Industry includes mining, manufacturing, energy production, and construction. Services cover government activities, communications, transportation, finance, and all other private economic activities that do not prod . . . more

  • agriculture: 12% (2017 est.)

  • industry: 22.2% (2017 est.)

  • services: 65.8% (2017 est.)

  • Agriculture - products:This entry is an ordered listing of major crops and products starting with the most important.

  • tobacco, corn, cotton, wheat, coffee, sugarcane, peanuts; sheep, goats, pigs

  • Industries:This entry provides a rank ordering of industries starting with the largest by value of annual output.

  • mining (coal, gold, platinum, copper, nickel, tin, diamonds, clay, numerous metallic and nonmetallic ores), steel; wood products, cement, chemicals, fertilizer, clothing and footwear, foodstuffs, beverages

  • Industrial production growth rate:This entry gives the annual percentage increase in industrial production (includes manufacturing, mining, and construction).

  • 0.3% (2017 est.)

  • country comparison to the world: 167

  • Labor force:This entry contains the total labor force figure.

  • 7.907 million (2017 est.)

  • country comparison to the world: 64

  • Labor force - by occupation:This entry lists the percentage distribution of the labor force by sector of occupation. Agriculture includes farming, fishing, and forestry. Industry includes mining, manufacturing, energy production, and construction. Services cover government activities, communications, transportation, finance, and all other economic activities that do not produce material goods. The distribution will total less than 100 percent if the data are incomplete and may range from 99-101 percent due to rounding. more

  • agriculture: 67.5% 

  • industry: 7.3% 

  • services: 25.2% (2017 est.)

  • Unemployment rate:This entry contains the percent of the labor force that is without jobs. Substantial underemployment might be noted.

  • 11.3% (2014 est.)

  • 80% (2005 est.)

  • note: data include both unemployment and underemployment; true unemployment is unknown and, under current economic conditions, unknowable

  • country comparison to the world: 154

  • Population below poverty line:National estimates of the percentage of the population falling below the poverty line are based on surveys of sub-groups, with the results weighted by the number of people in each group. Definitions of poverty vary considerably among nations. For example, rich nations generally employ more generous standards of poverty than poor nations.

  • 72.3% (2012 est.)

  • Household income or consumption by percentage share:Data on household income or consumption come from household surveys, the results adjusted for household size. Nations use different standards and procedures in collecting and adjusting the data. Surveys based on income will normally show a more unequal distribution than surveys based on consumption. The quality of surveys is improving with time, yet caution is still necessary in making inter-country comparisons.

  • lowest 10%: 2% 

  • highest 10%: 40.4% (1995)

  • Distribution of family income - Gini index:This index measures the degree of inequality in the distribution of family income in a country. The index is calculated from the Lorenz curve, in which cumulative family income is plotted against the number of families arranged from the poorest to the richest. The index is the ratio of (a) the area between a country's Lorenz curve and the 45 degree helping line to (b) the entire triangular area under the 45 degree line. The more nearly equal a country's income distribution, the closer its . . . more

  • 43.2 (2011 est.)

  • 50.1 (2006)

  • country comparison to the world: 48

  • Budget:This entry includes revenues, expenditures, and capital expenditures. These figures are calculated on an exchange rate basis, i.e., not in purchasing power parity (PPP) terms.

  • revenues: 3.8 billion (2017 est.)

  • expenditures: 5.5 billion (2017 est.)

  • Taxes and other revenues:This entry records total taxes and other revenues received by the national government during the time period indicated, expressed as a percent of GDP. Taxes include personal and corporate income taxes, value added taxes, excise taxes, and tariffs. Other revenues include social contributions - such as payments for social security and hospital insurance - grants, and net revenues from public enterprises. Normalizing the data, by dividing total revenues by GDP, enables easy comparisons acr . . . more

  • 21.5% (of GDP) (2017 est.)

  • country comparison to the world: 138

  • Budget surplus (+) or deficit (-):This entry records the difference between national government revenues and expenditures, expressed as a percent of GDP. A positive (+) number indicates that revenues exceeded expenditures (a budget surplus), while a negative (-) number indicates the reverse (a budget deficit). Normalizing the data, by dividing the budget balance by GDP, enables easy comparisons across countries and indicates whether a national government saves or borrows money. Countries with high budget deficits (relat . . . more

  • -9.6% (of GDP) (2017 est.)

  • country comparison to the world: 208

  • Public debt:This entry records the cumulative total of all government borrowings less repayments that are denominated in a country's home currency. Public debt should not be confused with external debt, which reflects the foreign currency liabilities of both the private and public sector and must be financed out of foreign exchange earnings.

  • 82.3% of GDP (2017 est.)

  • 69.9% of GDP (2016 est.)

  • country comparison to the world: 34

  • Fiscal year:This entry identifies the beginning and ending months for a country's accounting period of 12 months, which often is the calendar year but which may begin in any month. All yearly references are for the calendar year (CY) unless indicated as a noncalendar fiscal year (FY).

  • calendar year

  • Inflation rate (consumer prices):This entry furnishes the annual percent change in consumer prices compared with the previous year's consumer prices.

  • 0.9% (2017 est.)

  • -1.6% (2016 est.)

  • country comparison to the world: 49

  • Central bank discount rate:This entry provides the annualized interest rate a country's central bank charges commercial, depository banks for loans to meet temporary shortages of funds.

  • 7.17% (31 December 2010)

  • 975% (31 December 2007)

  • country comparison to the world: 46

  • Commercial bank prime lending rate:This entry provides a simple average of annualized interest rates commercial banks charge on new loans, denominated in the national currency, to their most credit-worthy customers.

  • 18% (31 December 2017 est.)

  • 7.1% (31 December 2016 est.)

  • country comparison to the world: 22

  • Stock of narrow money:This entry, also known as "M1," comprises the total quantity of currency in circulation (notes and coins) plus demand deposits denominated in the national currency held by nonbank financial institutions, state and local governments, nonfinancial public enterprises, and the private sector of the economy, measured at a specific point in time. National currency units have been converted to US dollars at the closing exchange rate for the date of the information. Because of exchange rate moveme . . . more

  • $4.322 billion (31 December 2017 est.)

  • $4.104 billion (31 December 2016 est.)

  • note: Zimbabwe's central bank no longer publishes data on monetary aggregates, except for bank deposits, which amounted to $2.1 billion in November 2010; the Zimbabwe dollar stopped circulating in early 2009; since then, the US dollar and South African rand have been the most frequently used currencies; there are no reliable estimates of the amount of foreign currency circulating in Zimbabwe

  • country comparison to the world: 109

  • Stock of broad money:This entry covers all of "Narrow money," plus the total quantity of time and savings deposits, credit union deposits, institutional money market funds, short-term repurchase agreements between the central bank and commercial deposit banks, and other large liquid assets held by nonbank financial institutions, state and local governments, nonfinancial public enterprises, and the private sector of the economy. National currency units have been converted to US dollars at the closing exchange r . . . more

  • $4.322 billion (31 December 2017 est.)

  • $4.104 billion (31 December 2016 est.)

  • country comparison to the world: 114

  • Stock of domestic credit:This entry is the total quantity of credit, denominated in the domestic currency, provided by financial institutions to the central bank, state and local governments, public non-financial corporations, and the private sector. The national currency units have been converted to US dollars at the closing exchange rate on the date of the information.

  • $8.389 billion (31 December 2017 est.)

  • $5.358 billion (31 December 2016 est.)

  • country comparison to the world: 115

  • Market value of publicly traded shares:This entry gives the value of shares issued by publicly traded companies at a price determined in the national stock markets on the final day of the period indicated. It is simply the latest price per share multiplied by the total number of outstanding shares, cumulated over all companies listed on the particular exchange.

  • $4.073 billion (13 April 2015 est.)

  • $11.82 billion (31 December 2012 est.)

  • $10.9 billion (31 December 2011 est.)

  • country comparison to the world: 88

  • Current account balance:This entry records a country's net trade in goods and services, plus net earnings from rents, interest, profits, and dividends, and net transfer payments (such as pension funds and worker remittances) to and from the rest of the world during the period specified. These figures are calculated on an exchange rate basis, i.e., not in purchasing power parity (PPP) terms.

  • -$716 million (2017 est.)

  • -$553 million (2016 est.)

  • country comparison to the world: 130

  • Exports:This entry provides the total US dollar amount of merchandise exports on an f.o.b. (free on board) basis. These figures are calculated on an exchange rate basis, i.e., not in purchasing power parity (PPP) terms.

  • $4.353 billion (2017 est.)

  • $3.366 billion (2016 est.)

  • country comparison to the world: 114

  • Exports - partners:This entry provides a rank ordering of trading partners starting with the most important; it sometimes includes the percent of total dollar value.

  • South Africa 50.3%, Mozambique 22.5%, UAE 9.8%, Zambia 4.9% (2017)

  • Exports - commodities:This entry provides a listing of the highest-valued exported products; it sometimes includes the percent of total dollar value.

  • platinum, cotton, tobacco, gold, ferroalloys, textiles/clothing

  • Imports:This entry provides the total US dollar amount of merchandise imports on a c.i.f. (cost, insurance, and freight) or f.o.b. (free on board) basis. These figures are calculated on an exchange rate basis, i.e., not in purchasing power parity (PPP) terms.

  • $5.472 billion (2017 est.)

  • $5.236 billion (2016 est.)

  • country comparison to the world: 122

  • Imports - commodities:This entry provides a listing of the highest-valued imported products; it sometimes includes the percent of total dollar value.

  • machinery and transport equipment, other manufactures, chemicals, fuels, food products

  • Imports - partners:This entry provides a rank ordering of trading partners starting with the most important; it sometimes includes the percent of total dollar value.

  • South Africa 47.8%, Zambia 20.5% (2017)

  • Reserves of foreign exchange and gold:This entry gives the dollar value for the stock of all financial assets that are available to the central monetary authority for use in meeting a country's balance of payments needs as of the end-date of the period specified. This category includes not only foreign currency and gold, but also a country's holdings of Special Drawing Rights in the International Monetary Fund, and its reserve position in the Fund.

  • $431.8 million (31 December 2017 est.)

  • $407.2 million (31 December 2016 est.)

  • country comparison to the world: 157

  • Debt - external:This entry gives the total public and private debt owed to nonresidents repayable in internationally accepted currencies, goods, or services. These figures are calculated on an exchange rate basis, i.e., not in purchasing power parity (PPP) terms.

  • $9.357 billion (31 December 2017 est.)

  • $10.14 billion (31 December 2016 est.)

  • country comparison to the world: 116

  • Stock of direct foreign investment - at home:This entry gives the cumulative US dollar value of all investments in the home country made directly by residents - primarily companies - of other countries as of the end of the time period indicated. Direct investment excludes investment through purchase of shares.

  • $3.86 billion (31 December 2017 est.)

  • $3.518 billion (31 December 2016 est.)

  • country comparison to the world: 110

  • Stock of direct foreign investment - abroad:This entry gives the cumulative US dollar value of all investments in foreign countries made directly by residents - primarily companies - of the home country, as of the end of the time period indicated. Direct investment excludes investment through purchase of shares.

  • $309.6 million (31 December 2017 est.)

  • $271.6 million (31 December 2016 est.)

  • country comparison to the world: 102

  • Exchange rates:This entry provides the average annual price of a country's monetary unit for the time period specified, expressed in units of local currency per US dollar, as determined by international market forces or by official fiat. The International Organization for Standardization (ISO) 4217 alphabetic currency code for the national medium of exchange is presented in parenthesis. Closing daily exchange rates are not presented in The World Factbook, but are used to convert stock values - e.g., the . . . more

  • Zimbabwean dollars (ZWD) per US dollar -

  • 1 (2017 est.)

  • 1 (2016 est.)

  • (2013)

  • 234.25 (2010)

  • note: the dollar was adopted as a legal currency in 2009; since then the Zimbabwean dollar has experienced hyperinflation and is essentially worthless

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