By: Latifa Yusuf Masai
Somalilandsun- The government has tacitly acknowledged the mushrooming of Foreign Exchange blackmarket in Somaliland.
According to the governor of the central bank Mohamed Abdi Ibrahim ‘Dhoobaale’ an anti forex blackmarket special police unit has been established and is currently active.
The governor revealed this during a presser at parliament buildings in Hargeisa where he had been briefing the legislature’s standing committee.
“Following the recent forex guidelines put in place by the administration limiting the exchange of a dollar to 7000 Somaliland shillings, some unscrupulous traders have invented black markets” said governor Dhoobaale
Adding that the illegal traders are exchanging a dollar at the exorbitant rate of 8000 local shillings and above, the central bank governor informed that the government is pursuing stringent punitive measures for those found circumventing the forex limits, thence creation of the special police unit.
Following the high devaluation of the Somaliland shillings in the last couple of months, president Ahmed Mahmud Silanyo decreed new measures geared towards reducing inflation, in which the change rate was limited while mobile money transactions were ordered to deal with local currency as pertains figures below $100.
While the measures have seen the local currency gain over the dollar as well as increase the purchasing power for basic commodities, some institutions especially private schools and hospitals are demanding payment in foreign currencies thence the blackmarket.
Though the capital Hargeisa is most affected by the unscrupulous traders Hopefully the new police unit will help bring the forex blackmarket down nationwide
But this is a tall Order for the authorities unless they crackdown of the privateers whose forex payment demand has facilitated profusion of the black marketeers.
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