Exchange offices limit sales of dollars in Bishkek as som slumps

Exchange offices limit sales of dollars in Bishkek as som slumps
By bne IntelliNews November 26, 2015

Most bureaux de change in the Kyrgyz capital Bishkek have stopped selling dollars and they are only buying foreign currency, 24.kg reports.

Commercial banks set the buy rate of dollars at KGS74 and the sell rate at KGS76-76.5. They have also limited the sale of dollars to no more than $200 per person, according to 24.kg.

The Kyrgyz foreign exchange market has been volatile in the second half of November as the som started facing rapid devaluation pressure from the weak currencies of its major trading partners – Russia and Kazakhstan – and falling remittances. In response, commercial banks started limiting the sale of cash dollars.

The National Bank intervened in the currency market for the third time this month, selling $15.4mn on November 25, but the move didn’t help prevent the som’s further depreciation. The exchange rate increased by KGS2.2 to KGS73.4 in the past two days. Since the beginning of the year the som devalued by 24.7%, losing over 20% of its value.

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