Rural financial markets: historical overview 1924-1991
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In the period 1980 to 1991, Zimbabwe’s commercial farming sector was serviced by a highly developed and regulated financial system. In contrast, the less developed rural sector was inadequately serviced by a poor formal financial system consisting of the Agricultural Finance Corporation (AFC) credit scheme and building societies, or had to depend on informal financial institutions. Table 14.1 shows that only 16.5 per cent of all building society outlets were located in communal lands where 70 per cent of the country’s total population resided. The distribution of commercial banks also followed a similar pattern. Only 14 out of a total of 69 branches, sub-branches and agencies of Barclays Bank, for example, were in rural areas.