China Demands Gold As Collateral For Zimbabwe Loans

Tyler Durden's picture

China, as we noted here, is happy to provide the financing to turn Africa into Disneyland - Monorails and all - but there is one catch... the loans must be backed by gold as collateral. As The Source reports, China wants Zimbabwe to use its mineral proceeds to guarantee any future loans having already extended nearly $1.5 billion in the last three years to Harare’s ailing economy. Various minerals have been discussed to back the loans "but we feel gold is more stablee," Zimbabwe's Mines Minister noted. Of course, China is defending the demand, claiming "it’s in accordance with rules and regulations when granting any loan" and adding that "it doesn’t mean that we will use the collateral." 


As The Source reports, Gold may be used as guarantees for existing, future loans...

China wants Zimbabwe to use its mineral proceeds to guarantee any future loans, a Chinese official said on Tuesday, adding that Beijing had already extended nearly $1,5 billion in the last three years to Harare’s ailing economy. In February, Finance Minister Patrick Chinamasa said the two countries were negotiating what he termed a comprehensive financial rescue package.




“We are discussing whether we can take proceeds of sales for some minerals as collateral for the loans,” said Han.


“The bank and the team from the ministry of finance are now working at a technical level on how they can set up such a mechanism, how much the collateral would be and how much loans they (Zimbabwe government) can get.”

In principle, the funding request and use of minerals as collateral has already been accepted, Han added.

He said Chinese loans to Zimbabwe were nearly $1,5 billion over the last three years – about 37 percent of the 2014 national budget at $4,1 billion – and that it was now burdensome for the government to repay.

China explains this is business as usual...

We are asking for collateral because it’s in accordance with rules and regulations when granting any loan, but it doesn’t mean that we will use the collateral. This is the concept that we are now discussing with the Zimbabwe government,” said Han.

So not hollowing out another nation's reserves at all. But Zimbabwe adds...

“We have looked at gold and diamonds, which we are considering as part of the securitization,” Deputy Mines Minister Fred Moyo says in phone interview from capital, Harare.


Government may also consider using chrome, “but we feel gold is more stable,” Moyo says

But one has to wonder how likely it is that Zimbabwe will promptly repay billions of dollars of loans - given their track record - and what a great way for China to transform its excess USDs to Gold (and get paid interest while it waits).

Especially in light of the ongoing push for a multiple currency system in the nation (i.e. Zimbabwe is about to start printing again)...

Zimbabwe Multiple Currency System Essential to Economy: Mangudya


Multiple currency system is “sine qua non for turning around the fortunes of the economy,” Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe Governor John Mangudya says in 1st statement since assuming office May 1.


Economy faces “significant” challenges, incl. lower domestic demand, deterioration in BoP, banking  “vulnerabilities”


Lack of liquidity and its limited circulation within economy remains biggest immediate challenge; central bank must find solutions to lack of formal interbank market and lack of lender of last resort


Central Bank to arrange for funding to capitalize itself, become lender of last resort

Seems like China is on to something!

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One And Only's picture


Send in seal team 6 and have the IRS audit their asses.

Arius's picture


Thats crazy, I thought they were there to help the Africans ...


EDIT: i read it carefully and they quantify "this doesnt mean they will use the collateral" ... why are they asking for it then ??? ohhhh just in case ... i get it

These chinese are smt arent they ?  funny thing while drilling in the disputed waters near Vietnam, they say they will do it until August 30 ... just be patient and we will leave

quite a performance, i guess billions of people, got a few geniueses here and there  to pick from ...

Keyser's picture

It begins... The alarm horns are sounding in the Fed... 


Arius's picture

it is all according to schedule, everyone is on the plan .... it will not happen until the fat lady sings ...

mjcOH1's picture

Wow.   A business contract between Zimbabwe and China.   What could go wrong?

Grande Tetons's picture

If you had to bet...who was the more savy party of said contract? 

Clever Name's picture


Something along the lines of "If I owe you $10..."

DaddyO's picture

After reading Brandon Smith's article down thread, this move by China makes perfect sense.

Serfs are many and broke, Tryants are few and well funded and heavily armed.


SafelyGraze's picture


the dollar is backed by the full faith and credit of the government

but gold is not backed by anything


Boxed Merlot's picture

It begins... The alarm horns are sounding in the Fed...


Annual budget @ frn4.1B?  At nearly 120M an hour, the fed's been adding that much to the US money supply every 35 hours or so for the last 4+ years.  C'mon, the beranke/yellen flow  musters up a measly frn1.5B in less than 10 hours of QE.  And it ain’t backed by nuthin.

Zimbabwe's still gotta lot to learn.

Libertarian777's picture

will not 'use' means the Chinese will not rehypothecate the collateral. Once they have that cold hard metal in their custody it's going to damn well stay that way.

TheReplacement's picture

There are plenty of geniuses but really, no genius really truly believes he can own the world.

Mad Muppet's picture

Well, no...but if you own all the wealth, minerals, and oil what else do you need to posess to consider that all others are under your thumb?

Offthebeach's picture

Doesn't The Middle Kingdom know gold is barbaric?

Calling Dr. Krugman, Dr. Bernanke, Dr. Geithner, Dr. Friedman.....

1 over Infinity's picture

I would much rather have one trillion Zimbabwean dollars.

logicalman's picture

Fucking genius!


Ignatius's picture

Naw, just dustin' off an old, well known script.

prains's picture

Gold for paper......what a deal, gotta jump at that


Shhhhh, don't tell anyone.  

prains's picture

if they wait maybe walmat will mark it down and the gold will be even cheeper

Slave's picture

The first rule of Fight Club...

ebworthen's picture

Gold Bitchez!

Africa is to China as North America was to Europe, starting around 1492.

Grande Tetons's picture

I see a lot of Casinos in Africa's future. 

SilverRhino's picture

I pity those black people living there.   China doesn't give two shits about life and will drive them off the land.   EPIC population dislocations and massacres.   

Africans thought the West was bad ... just wait until they get a taste of the East.

UselessEater's picture

oh you think this is new.

Zim was created only through the guns and finance and sanctions etc that were supported in various ways by the Anglo-American, Chinese and Russians.

why is your handle a Rhino?

MeelionDollerBogus's picture

China wants the resources in the land, not to live there.
You're sadly mistaken if you think Chinese mainlanders want to live in any part of Africa forever.

Poor Grogman's picture

New china best seller

Confessions of a Chinese economic hit man.

TheFourthStooge-ing's picture

Title changed parallely to correspond with phenomenum prosperously:

Confessions of Chinese 'american' Extorter of the Weak, Farmer of the Poor, Working for the Chinese 'american' King Class, the Middle Class

Poor Grogman's picture

The mattering thing that an " American" would not notice is that Americanism is blobbing up.

Everywhere and always it an " American " way, the only place to be worth somthing.

TheFourthStooge-ing's picture

Made me laugh.

The nature of 'american' Chinese Citizenism is eternal, and propensitized to blobbing up.

whoknoz's picture plated gold would be rather tacky...

Grande Tetons's picture

China will be a tough lender. 

Can't pay. OK. Gimme my fucking Gold.  

Clever Name's picture

And if they dont, what then? Would China invade Zim? I just cant see that happening.

Grande Tetons's picture

As per another post on this thread.....the term is economic hitman. 

Alberich's picture

Ex-Rhodesian farmers might have some good advice for China on the value of Zimbabwean promises. If Mugabe hadn't murdered them on his way to the top. China better hold the collateral in escrow in Beijing.

UselessEater's picture

China and Russia are preferred Zim partners (Commo's vs Anglo's); western interests be very cautious - the west was by and large only useful to install Mugabe who has lingered on long enough to see the coming fruition of the BRICS.

The deal further entrenches the Chinese presence in Zimbabwe’s natural resource sector, and one which they have jointly looted and plundered with ZANU PF for close to two decades now.

MeelionDollerBogus's picture

You obviously don't understand collateral.

Collateral is delivered PRIOR to the loan.

The loan is then repaid or not, and if not, the collateral is already in possession of the lender.

Gringo Viejo's picture

You Betcha Bwana!

No gold...bad juju for you 'bro! 

Kreditanstalt's picture

"Finance Minister Patrick Chinamasa"

"Chinamasa??"  Is it April Fool's Day or what?

TheFourthStooge-ing's picture


"Finance Minister Patrick Chinamasa"


Is it April Fool's Day or what?

Every day is April 1st in the Mugabe Kingdom.

MeelionDollerBogus's picture

Is new Chinese export for world of news! MAY-pril Fool's Day!

Al Huxley's picture

You'd think they'd want something of timeless value as collateral, USTs or USDs.  Why a depreciating commodity like gold?  Everybody who's anybody knows it's best days are over...


Those crazy Chinese, who would ever think of using GOLD as collateral?


BTW, in case you're questioning 'Metals Focus' credibility (the linked article), I've done some quick research, and it seems EVERYONE there has an illustrious past with GFMS and Thompson Reuters, so you know they're the best of the best in unbiased precious metals analysis.

TheFourthStooge-ing's picture


they're the best of the best in unbiased precious metals analysis.

Ah, they must be the ones that lured Jon Nadler away from Kitco.

IridiumRebel's picture

Well, all of those "journalists" will be replaced by computers who write content...all those guys will be labor stats soon enough.

icanhasbailout's picture

If Zimbabwe has gold, what does it need a loan for?

prains's picture

....haven't you heard? Paper with Mao's face printed on it is moar valuable

Al Huxley's picture

It's currently in 'deep storage' much like a large amount of US gold.

CHX's picture

Bingo! Unstoring is a costly, energy- and labor-intensive business...