Finance Minister Winston Jordan is assuring that the foreign exchange reserves in the country remain stable.
Appearing on 94.1 FM on Monday morning, Minister Jordan said there is no shortage of foreign exchange in the country but there appears to be some factors that may be affecting the flow in some sectors.
He said the holding of foreign exchange in commercial banks has not reduced dramatically and the Central Bank reserves are higher than they were in 2015/2016.
“The holding of foreign exchange in commercial banks have not reduced dramatically, neither in the Central Bank. In fact Central Bank reserves are higher than they were in 2015/2016. Part is contrived and part is reality as foreign exchange is not in the system, and part is our own doing because we have a large project portfolio which is externally financed and to the extent that if we don’t get them going we don’t get the disbursement”, he said.
Asked if there may be a deliberate attempt by some businesses to starve the economy of foreign exchange, Minister Jordan said, that may only be part of the problem.
Mnister Jordan also said a number of businesses especially in the gold sector, may not be entering their gold earnings in foreign exchange back into the economy. He said moves are afoot to have such issues addressed.
Some business people have complained that some commercial banks have been limiting their access to foreign exchange. Jordan said the banks have not complained of any shortage and have been buying more foreign currency from the central bank.
The Finance Minister expressed confidence in central bank governor and his ministry of finance staff, when it comes to presenting him with the numbers facing the economy.