The Syrian pound has continued its freefall for the third consecutive week, reaching an all-time low against the US dollar. Meanwhile, the Central Bank of Syria has raised the price of the customs dollar by 34 percent.
According to “Lira Today,” the black market exchange rate for the Syrian pound against the US dollar in the capital city of Damascus is currently 9,000 pounds for sale and 8,900 pounds for purchase. In Aleppo, the exchange rate is 9,100 pounds for sale and 9,000 pounds for purchase.
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The value of the Syrian pound has plummeted by over 60 percent against the dollar since May 2022 when the exchange rate was less than 4,000 pounds for one dollar.
Despite the devaluation of the pound in the black market, the Central Bank of Syria has maintained the exchange rate at 7,500 pounds per dollar in the “Remittances and Exchange” bulletin, creating a gap of 1,500 pounds between the official rate and the black market rate.
The Central Bank had earlier announced that it would set the exchange rate of personal transfers at a level close to that of the parallel (black) market. Since then, it has updated the exchange rate in the “Remittances and Exchange” bulletin to align with each increase in the exchange rate of the Syrian pound against the US dollar in the black market.
The Central Bank of Syria has raised the price of the customs dollar to 6,500 pounds, a 34 percent increase from the previous rate of 4,000 pounds, according to the customs and aviation bulletin released on Tuesday. This move comes amidst the ongoing collapse of the Syrian pound.
Economist Ayman Dayyoub, a professor at the Faculty of Economics, expressed concern about the impact of the customs dollar bulletin on the Syrian economy. He was quoted in the pro-regime newspaper Al-Watan as saying that this amendment represents a new episode of inflation and will have a direct impact on prices.
He further explained, “The costs of imports have increased, leading to higher prices for imported materials and goods in the local market. This increase in prices is proportional to the increase in the customs value of imported materials.”
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.