Heightened Restrictions and Emerging Hurdles: Tightening Control over Money Transfers in Syria

Recent developments have significantly complicated the process of conducting internal money transfers in Syria, Shaam Network reports.

Recent developments have significantly complicated the process of conducting internal money transfers in Syria, as confirmed by local economic sources. The closure of all transfer offices in Homs and the Damascus countryside, coupled with the imposition of additional stringent conditions by the regime, has markedly increased the difficulty of sending funds internally.

Citizens who have recently completed financial transfers report being subjected to intense surveillance measures, including camera monitoring and video recording, treating them “as if they were potential criminals.” These actions aim to deter recipients from utilizing internal notifications for receiving external transfers, pushing them toward official companies that adhere to the Central Bank’s exchange rates, deemed unfair by some.

Official Estimates Volume of Syrian Investment Abroad; Justifies Money Transfer Restrictions

A local website with government ties recently reported that the “Al-Haram” money transfer company has lowered its weekly transfer limit to a mere one million Syrian pounds per individual. The report further clarifies that individuals must present a commercial register to transfer one million liras. Without such a register, the transfer amount is restricted to less than one million, for example, between 950,000 to 800,000 Syrian pounds.

This measure, described as temporary and intended to last a few months due to unspecified company-specific circumstances, is expected to be implemented across all money transfer firms and branches throughout Syrian governorates.

The regime’s bank’s inconsistent policies have presented numerous challenges for the populace and merchants alike. Citrus exporters, for instance, have reiterated calls to halt the enforcement of Resolution No. 20 of 2024 by the bank, which mandates foreign exchange commitments from exports, adversely affecting various sectors.

In a recent development, the Regime Bank reinstated the original transfer ceiling after a temporary reduction, raising the daily limit back to one million Syrian pounds per person. This adjustment follows a statement from the Central Bank announcing the restoration of the transfer limit for Al-Haram and Al-Fouad companies to 5 million liras per individual, along with a reassurance of regulated liquidity movements in line with pre-existing directives.

Merchants have voiced concerns over the reduced daily transfer cap from 5 million liras to 1 million, even for those with commercial records, forecasting potential complications in business transactions.

 

This article was translated and edited by The Syrian Observer. The Syrian Observer has not verified the content of this story. Responsibility for the information and views set out in this article lies entirely with the author.

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