Christopher Mvunga takes office as BOZ Governor
Christopher Mvunga BOZ Governor , a former banker with UK’s Standard Chartered has now officially taken office as Bank of Zambia Governor to replace Dr. Denny Kalyalya who was relieved of his job.
Mvunga had to undergo a ratification process in Parliament after his appointment by President Edgar Lungu, which has seen the substantive Deputy Governor Dr. Francis Chipimo hold fort.
President Lungu has since congratulated Mvunga for his appointment “Congratulations once again on your appointment as Governor of the Central Bank of Zambia.
The subsequent ratification of your appointment by parliament is a clear indication that you are qualified for the job.
It is also an indication that the people of Zambia have placed their confidence in in you to turn around the fortunes of the financial sector of the country.
Do not let them down” stated the head of state and government.
Furthermore, the head of state emphasized that the new Central bank Governor has an enormous task ahead of him,
as he will oversee the operations of entire financial sector as well as the performance of the country’s economy.
“I am confident that with over 30 years of experience in the private and public financial management sector,
you will apply your skills and expertise to among others, review and formulate policy-driven solutions to address the macroeconomic challenges that our economy is currently faced
Mvunga’s appointment and ratification in parliament has been received with mixed feelings with the main opposition United Party for National Development having opposed his ratification in parliament.
However, Mvunga went through as the ruling Patriotic Front had the required numbers.
Mvunga has a big challenge ahead as he inherits a Kwacha that has within 2020 shed about 42% of its value.
The stability of the Kwacha is the biggest single line target that he will be judged from as even the inflation target of single digit can easily be attained if the Kwacha holds its ground.
BOZ had also indicated that they would establish gold reserves which would offer an alternative buffer and boost national reserves after the discovery of substantial gold reserves at Kasenseli in Mwinilunga.
The gold would be bought in Kwacha and be used to shore up national reserves as gold prices have been more resilient even in global crises times.
Mvunga may have a better chance of succeeding in the job having spent some few years working on the fiscal side at the ministry of finance
and cabinet office, which some government insiders have told ZBT is key to understanding how the “system works”.
The first 100 days perhaps will give the market a feel of the key plays that Mvunga will initiate that will determine the success or otherwise of his tenure.