The economic situation in the impoverished African nation of Zimbabwe has become extremely difficult lately. The authorities acknowledged that there were only 217 dollars left in the state treasury. Zimbabwe is to hold a constitutional referendum and presidential election in the near future.
"Last week, when we paid salaries to budget employees, there only 217 dollars left in the state treasury," Zimbabwe's Finance Minister Tendai Biti told reporters on Tuesday.
Thus, according to him, at present moment, bank accounts of many people, who received their money, are in a better condition than the state treasury.
"Public finances are in a state of paralysis," said Biti, as quoted by AFP.
The Government of Zimbabwe warned its citizens of the absence of funds required to finance the constitutional referendum and elections expected to take place later this year. Biti admitted that the country had no other choice than to ask for help from international donors.
"We will address the international community with a request for help," he said. Spokespeople for Zimbabwe's electoral commission said that there were $104 million needed to organize the voting.
The economic situation in Zimbabwe began to deteriorate rapidly in the early 2000s. President Robert Mugabe started to run the policy of seizing land owned by white farmers. The move showed a negative influence on the level of investor confidence in the country, paralyzed production and forced the international community to impose sanctions on Zimbabwe and scared off tourists.
After more than a decade, during which the country was suffering from hyperinflation, the situation became more stable. However, public finances still remain in a serious condition, and local businesses can not develop normally because of the lack of liquidity, unstable power supplies and manpower shortages.
In 2013, Zimbabwe's state budget was evaluated at $3.8 billion. According to forecasts, the economy of the country will grow by 5%.
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