18:25 / 25.07.2022
Banks in Uzbekistan face a shortage of cash US dollars 

There were reports that several banks of Uzbekistan have set restrictions on cash currency up to 2-3 thousand dollars. This can be explained by the increase in speculative practices.

Photo: Reuters

In some banks in Uzbekistan, there is a shortage of cash currency starting from Monday, July 25.

Journalist Aziza Kurbanova wrote on her Telegram channel that there is a US dollar deficit in banks. According to her, the head office of the Ipak Yuli Bank has a limit on withdrawing more than $2,000 in cash.

“No one could tell the reason. They say there was no restriction at the bank last Thursday. At the Mirabad branch of the Ipak Yuli Bank, individuals withdraw up to $3,000.

Running from branch to branch is a big problem. In this heat, we meet those who cannot withdraw the required amount in branches across the city. For example, a person who needs $10,000 today has to go to at least 3-4 branches. One guy needs to go to the USA – he needs $40,000. I think it will take another 3 days for him, unless there is an unexpected miracle,” she said.

Ismail Turopov, an expert in the field of banking and finance, wrote that the 8 banks he called said that such a large amount of money (about 30-50 thousand dollars) may be unavailable in the bank vault.

He pointed out that while the banks did not explicitly say that there was a “problem”, they were actually trying to convey that the cash restrictions were in place to “limit speculative practices”.

According to a Kun.uz source, several branches of Hamkorbank are unable to supply clients with large amounts of cash. In Anorbank, one can also withdraw currency up to $2,000. In some banks, it is possible to withdraw more currency than the set limit “with the chairman’s permission”.

So far, the banks have not officially commented. Only Kapitalbank announced on Friday that it was suspending some money transfers due to “an increase in the number of transfers, which by their very nature contradict personal goals”.

CB Chairman, Mamarizo Nurmuratov, said at the press conference on Thursday that there is no risk of shortage of cash currency in banks, and sufficient cash reserves have been formed to provide them with cash.

It should be recalled that at the end of June there was a currency shortage in banks. Experts explained that the reason for this is that the ruble exchange rate continues to strengthen rapidly against the national currencies of Central Asian countries.

The Central Bank reported that the sudden increase in remittances may be due to the fact that Kyrgyz and Tajik immigrants working in Russia and Kazakhstan are transferring money to Uzbekistan. The regulator cited the ban and restrictions on giving money transfers in dollars in neighboring countries as the reason.

In January-June 2022, the volume of remittances received by Uzbekistan amounted to $6.5 billion. This is twice as much as compared to the same period last year. The increase in June was more than 3 times.

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