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While the government contends that there is no shortage in foreign currency, some banks are still telling their customers otherwise.Up to yesterday, it was not possible for some businesses in the manufacturing sector for example, to access foreign currency over US$12,000. Given this state of affairs, traders are worried about the implications this could have for their businesses this Christmas season and beyond. They are calling on the Government and Central Bank to investigate the matter.Kaieteur News even saw documentation from one of the largest banks here, notifying a few businesses that foreign currency, particularly US dollars, was not available at this time.This newspaper subsequently made checks of its own into the matter.A Kaieteur News reporter contacted one of the Republic Bank branches and asked if US$40,Anders Nilsson Jersey,000 can be accessed for a business transaction. A representative stated that this was not possible as “that foreign currency is not in abundance.”A supervisor further confirmed that the bank is experiencing a “shortage” and only US$500 could be made available at this time.The Accounts department of this newspaper also sought to effect a transaction of over US$100,NFL Jerseys Wholesale,000. However, the Republic Bank branch at Water Street informed the department that they could not facilitate the transaction because that amount is not accessible.The newspaper was told to submit a document requesting the transaction and its name would be put on to a waiting list. The bank said that it could not guarantee that the amount would be available next week.Central Bank Governor, Dr. Gobind Ganga,  asked for the location of the Republic Bank branch that was posing the difficulty. Kaieteur News understands that the state of affairs is not unique to Republic Bank. Several businessmen who spoke with this publication explained that other banks are experiencing the same “shortage.”The reason for the claim of “shortage” is still to be determined.Some traders believe that it is a direct consequence of Guyana’s severed relationship with correspondent partner,Cheap Jerseys Store, Bank of America.The possibility that the banks could be hoarding the foreign currency to create crisis upon which they could benefit, was also proffered.SHORTAGE OR HOARDING  A prominent official at Central Bank confirmed with Kaieteur News that while the banks may be contending that there is a scarcity, none has approached it for money or has since reported a problem.The official said, “They can say what they want to say but the bottom line is that Central Bank has to ensure foreign currency is being sold to people who are actual traders, are transacting business and that the foreign currency is for payment for goods and services.”The financial analyst added, “The banks are saying all sorts of things. Demerara Bank has not come into us and they have enough money. Republic Bank is coming in and saying all sorts of things yet they can’t say who are the people really demanding foreign currencies.”Kaieteur News understands that Central Bank is currently looking into reports that some exporters are buying the foreign currency here and are selling it directly to Trinidadian companies.The Banking official said too that the banks have close to US$400M in the system.“With that in mind, there is a question to be asked. If there is a demand in the system why can’t they use the money to meet the demands? But they are trying to put pressure on those people so they can say it’s Central Bank but we have nothing to do with it,” the official said.Another official said that Central Bank asked the commercial banks to channel the requests for foreign currency through the Central Bank. None has done so although the offer was made a week ago.The Ministry of Finance and Central Bank via a statement to the press on Tuesday also debunked claims that there is a shortage of foreign currency in Guyana.Both parties said that the reserves at the Bank of Guyana have improved from approximately US$598M at the end of 2015 to about US$625M at present, an increase of US$28M.Finance Minister, Winston Jordan said, “When you consider the holdings by commercial banks, foreign reserves have also increased in the system from approximately US$955M at the end of 2015 to US$1.042B at present.”He said, “Therefore, there is no shortage of foreign exchange,Wholesale NFL Jerseys China, consequently, there is no foreign exchange crisis looming,Cheap Jerseys From China, and no need for the currency to depreciate. The Bank of Guyana will take all necessary actions to protect the currency and to protect the reserves at the Bank of Guyana.”Central Bank Governor, Dr. Gobind Ganga concurred with Minister Jordan that there was no reason for concern.“We are expecting the commercial banks to hold approximately US$403M by the end of the year,” Dr. Ganga revealed.The Governor General also stated that the Bank of Guyana had US$598M at the end of 2015 and is currently holding close to US$625M.“You can see therefore that there is an increase in foreign exchange availability from the holdings,” Dr. Ganga asserted.The Governor said that an increase in the circulation of Trinidad and Tobago and Barbadian dollars in the Guyanese economy has been noticed. This indicates that these currencies are being converted into Guyana dollars then used to purchase US currency.“Since 2014 we have had a significant supply of CARICOM currency in the (Guyanese) system more specifically, for example, we had an increase in Trinidad and Tobago dollars from TT$9.1M in 2014 to TT$24.4M in 2015 and in November of 2016 TT$38.3M. You will find that it is very difficult to get foreign exchange in Trinidad in particular, so what is happening is that we have this flow of TT dollars coming into Guyana, converted to Guyana dollars and then used to purchase US dollars,” Dr. Ganga explained.“We have also had a significant inflow of Barbadian dollars. From 2014 of BD$8.3M to BD$13.5M in 2015 and as at November 2016 it is at BD$12.3M. So you can see that we are also supplying foreign exchange to other countries in the region,” Dr. Ganga added.“Suriname also has major issues and we find that it is happening at the border where there is a conversion of cash from Guyana dollars to US dollars and then repatriated to Suriname,” Dr. Ganga said further.Minister Jordan said that the issue will be addressed.“The issue as it relates to the Trinidad and Barbados currencies flooding our market will be looked at and action will be taken to ensure that this occurs in a normal way rather than it being here just to buy up foreign currency,” Minister Jordan explained.With regard to the issue of difficulties of remitting monies, Dr. Ganga dismissed the assertion and assured that there is no problem. He said that all commercial banks in Guyana have at least one corresponding international bank.
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