CBZ Co-operating on US Investigations

CBZ Co-operating on US Investigations
Image Credit: Business Daily

CBZ Bank Limited is co-operating in ongoing investigations by the Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) regarding historical transactions involving a party that was subject to OFAC economic Group Legal Corporate Secretary Rumbidzai A. Jakanani says.

The bank is reported to have been fined $385 million a 90 per cent reduction from the initial fine of US$3,8 billion by the United States Treasury’s (OFAC) after allegedly performing thousands of transactions for an economically sanctioned subject.

“Based on the facts currently known, it is not practicable at this time for CBZ Bank to determine the terms on which the ongoing investigations will be resolved or the timing of such resolution, or for CBZ Bank to estimate reliably the amounts or range of possible amounts of any fines and /or penalties which could be significant,” Jakanani says in the Unaudited Financial Results for the Half Year ended 30 June 2018.

CBZ is alleged to have done 15 thousand transactions on behalf of ZB Bank, which was by then under OFAC economic sanctions.

In a fight against the US treasury fines, CBZ has been engaging the Ministry of Finance and the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe (RBZ).

CBZ has also been going through legal processes against the charges.

“We have set, as you are probably aware external and internal legal counsel on the matter and others as we think that is going to take a while for us to reach some kind of an understanding of when it will be concluded and what given the magnitude of that fine, if at all is going to hold water, is going to be,” CBZ Group Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Dr Blessing Mudavanhu said.

The 90 per cent reduction in fine came after mitigation and negotiations last year.

The US government imposed sanctions against specific individuals and entities in March 2003 for undermining democratic institutions or processes in the country.

Besides ZB, other government parastatals put under sanctions included Agribank, Industrial Development Corporation of Zimbabwe Ltd, Infrastructure Development Bank of Zimbabwe, Minerals Marketing Corporation of Zimbabwe, Intermarket Holdings Limited, Scotfin Limited, Zimbabwe Iron and Steel Company, Zimbabwe Mining Development Corporation, ZIMRE Holdings Limited, Osleg (PVT) LTD, Oryx Diamonds (PVT) LTD and the Zimbabwe Defence Industries (PVT) LTD.

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