Banks reduce dollar issuance; changes for students abroad
MMA said that it will continue to provide dollars through banks to Maldivian students pursuing higher education abroad.
The central bank, MMA, has tightened the procedure of sending money or making Telegraphic Transfer (TT) for Maldivians studying abroad, in a bid to reduce the amount of dollars it provides to banks.
Atoll Times has confirmed through an email sent by MMA to banks with effect from 1 January:
Dollars will be released only to students from A-level to higher level courses
Earlier, all foreign students were able to make TT in Rufiyaa, because MMA supplied the dollar to the banks.
Following this, the national bank BML has now informed its customers about it
If money is sent to students pursuing courses from A-level and lower, they will have to pay the money they want to send to banks in dollars
When contacted, the banks did not respond to requests for comment.
MMA said that it will continue to provide dollars through banks to Maldivian students pursuing higher education abroad and will continue to uphold the policy.
"Individual banks will always be able to provide dollars to their customers if they wish," MMA said.
In its recommendation to parliament for this year's budget, the MMA said that high prices of commodities in the market and high cost of imports are adversely impacting foreign exchange reserves. This, the recommendation said, could lead to a reduction in the release of dollars for government purposes this year.
The reserves that could be used with the government's T-bill sold to state-run State Bank of India rose by USD 114 million to USD 219 million.