Additional currencies to be allowed for import transactions: MMA

Governor of Maldives Monetary Authority (MMA), Ali Hashim | Photo: Majlis

Male’, Maldives – Governor of the Maldives Monetary Authority (MMA) Ali Hashim has said that the central bank is preparing to allow additional currencies to be used for import transactions other than the American Dollar.

Speaking at the parliament committee on Public Accounts, Governor Ali Hashim said that this is being considered to lower the demand for the American dollar. He told the committee that the two largest markets from which Maldives imports items, India and Chinese currency would be allowed for imports in the future.

“We are looking at additional currencies to be brought as alternatives to the exchange. It is possible to directly swap Chinese Yuan and Indian rupees” governor Hashim told.

Deputy governor of MMA, Ahmed Imad further added that this is how other countries do it as well. He told that currencies of those countries with which the trade links are the strongest are generally used for trade purposes. He told that once MMA establishes a mechanism by which local currency can be used to acquire products from another jurisdiction, that the demand for USD will drop.

Due to the Covid-19 pandemic there has been a huge demand for the American dollars which has cased the black market price of USD to increase significantly. MMA has injected a total of USD 521 million so far through lending to the banks operating in the country.