Against the ropes, the Cuban Government announces the purchase of dollars in cash at 120 pesos

Against the ropes, the Cuban Government announces the purchase of dollars in cash at 120 pesos

In the midst of the deepest economic crisis in two decades, the Cuban government announced the purchase of dollars in cash at 120 pesos starting this Thursday. “We are going to start with the purchase of foreign currency, of all currencies including the dollar in cash higher than today’s exchange rate,” said Economy Minister Alejandro Gil Fernández at the Round Table this wednesday.

Dollars can only be sold in cash at Cadeca (exchange houses) and banks, but the deposit of that currency in freely convertible currency (MLC) accounts is still without effect, the minister president of the Central Bank of Guatemala emphasized in the program. Cuba, Marta Sabina Wilson González, who added that the measure is aimed at individuals and private sector actors.

“This exchange rate is not the equilibrium exchange rate of the economy,” Wilson González pointed out, insisting that the new rate “is not static but will move depending on how the market works.”

Gil clarified that for the moment foreign currency will not be sold to the population, that this step “is not going to be immediate,” but regarding the purchase with the new exchange rate, he insisted that the measure intends to guarantee “an incentive” for the people sell foreign currency to the state.

The ways to exchange foreign currencies will not only be for cash, foreign exchange entries are included by transfers from abroad and deposits that are in accounts in MLC will also enter this new exchange rate, said Wilson González.

“We are going to start with the purchase of foreign currency, of all currencies including the dollar in cash higher than today’s exchange rate”

The sale of foreign currency, according to Gil, “is a missing piece in the gear, in the mechanism of the economy,” which “very slightly, very gradually begins to show signs of recovery.”

Among the justifications to start with the purchase of foreign currency, Gil referred to the informal exchange market that is capturing the currencies that enter the country due to the high price at which they are sold.

“Success is that you have a level of supply in national currency that generates an incentive for people who have foreign currency or receive it from abroad or international travelers,” said the Minister of Economy, pointing out that they intend that with the change in pesos proposed by the State, people “have a level of consumption in the country”.

This Wednesday in the informal market of the Island one US dollar it was sold at 115 pesosthe euro at 119 and the MLC, a digital currency that the Government invented to sell food and appliances in dollar stores, at 118. For months, currencies have exceeded 100 pesos in this type of exchange.

The great victim of this Wednesday’s announcement is the salary of state workers who have no other income in foreign currency. With this rate, the Government is recognizing that a professional can earn barely a hundred dollars a month after working full days.

This Wednesday in the informal market of the Island a US dollar was sold for 115 pesos

Without prior notice, on May 20, 2021 Cuban airports stopped selling foreign currency. The news was announced by Cadeca in a message broadcast through its social networks a few hours before the measure came into force.

The state entity maintained that the low influx of tourists due to the pandemic has caused a “significant deficit” of foreign currency and that to date it has been able to operate within the established limits, but the lack of liquidity has reached an unsustainable extreme.

The rest of the establishments of that chain and the banks – both state monopoly sectors – had not sold dollars or any other hard currency for a long time due to the lack of liquidity in the country, which is going through its worst crisis in three decades.

On June 21 of last year, the Government “temporarily” suspended accepting bank cash deposits of US dollars. Then he specified that the measure was due to “the obstacles” imposed by “the US economic blockade” so that the national banking system can deposit abroad the dollars it collects on the island.

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