FBC Bank has a prepaid MasterCard which is used to make online payments and transact with outside the country. Today, one of Techzim’s readers alerted us that they visited the bank and attempted to load their prepaid Mastercard with money which included bond notes, they had $20 USD + $15 in bond notes.
To their surprise, FBC bank rejected their bond notes stating that they only accept cash-ins of USD or direct transfers from outside the country. We called FBC and asked whether this was true and they confirmed that their prepaid cards will only accept USD to facilitate their Nostro account and allow online or transaction outside the country, they also informed us that their local Mastercard would no longer work outside the country or online.
This is the first bank to openly confirm that their local Debit Mastercard is no longer work online or outside the country, which makes us wonder if Bond Notes are still being considered 1:1 with USD by the banking community, especially under the watch of the RBZ.
Worryingly, this is the same bank that is issuing out bond notes to its clients on withdrawals but won’t take the same bond notes back, even though clients are still under the premise that their accounts are in USD.
Techzim called the RBZ, the regulator, they said that the Bond Note and USD are at par on a 1:1 basis and should be accepted as equivalent by all businesses and banks. Therefore, the same banks issuing bond notes are meant to accept bond notes as USD equivalent. The RBZ informed Techzim that they would investigate the issue.
Please note that you can call the RBZ with any reports you may have of banks or businesses on 08086770 (Econet Toll-Free) or 08006009 (TelOne Toll-Free)