HARARE, Zimbabwe (CNN) — Zimbabwe’s central bank introduced a $10 billion note worth less than 20 U.S. dollars, as the once-prosperous southern African nation battles against spiraling hyperinflation.
Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe Governor Gideon Gono said the $10 billion note was being introduced for the “convenience of the public ahead of the festive season.”
On Thursday, the U.S. dollar traded for about 600 million Zimbabwe dollars, and the hyperinflation was expected to continue.
People slept overnight at the bank doors, hoping to get money for the next day.
President Robert Mugabe apologized to his ZANU-PF party supporters Thursday for the problems Zimbabweans were facing but insisted his nation has turned a corner in its fight against its worst humanitarian crisis, the state-owned Herald newspaper reported.
Shortages of most essentials such as electricity, fuel, medicine and food have become a common feature in Zimbabwe, forcing people to flee the country.
Zimbabwe has slashed zeros from the amount of its worthless currency during the past two years — the latest being 10 zeros in August.