Yemeni exchange companies shut down due to currency collapse

Source: Xinhua| 2018-10-01 22:19:55|Editor: Li Xia
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ADEN, Yemen, Oct. 1 (Xinhua) -- Yemeni exchange companies were shut down and began a strike on Monday in protest against the collapse of country's national currency.

In a joint statement, commercial banks and exchange companies operating in the southern port city of Aden decided to close their doors after the sharp devaluation of the local currency against major foreign currencies.

The exchange companies urged the country's Finance Ministry and the Central Bank to immediately take necessary decisions and find solutions to halt currency devaluation.

The depreciation of Yemeni riyal continued in recent days. In the street markets in Aden, where the Saudi-backed government is officially based, one U.S. dollar was traded for 730 riyals, up from 215 riyals compared with the rate before the war.

With the sharp devaluation of the local currency against major foreign currencies, prices of basic commodities witnessed hikes, worsening the economic woes and leaving many citizens in destitute in the war-ravaged Arab country.

Earlier on the day, Yemen's President Abdu-Rabbu Mansour Hadi held an emergency meeting with the country's supreme economic committee and other high-ranking government officials including Prime Minister Ahmed Obeid bin Daghr.

Hadi discussed the country's economic situation and the latest developments, including the rapid devaluation of the Yemeni riyal, and ordered the government to identify the reasons by providing urgent solutions or recommendations, according to the state-run Saba news agency.

The Yemeni economy is continuing to suffer after all exports were halted following a blockade on the country which was part of a Saudi-led military intervention in March 2015. The blockade has also largely restricted imports.

All investments, including oil and gas projects, whose revenues used to contribute more than 70 percent of the state budget, were shut down.

Flow of foreign cash has stopped almost completely and widespread corruption within the government institutions also worsened the economic misery.