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Syria attributes currency depreciation to speculation

03-10-2012 09:27 BJT Special Report:Crisis in Syria |

DAMASCUS, March 9 (Xinhua) --Syria's minister of finance attributed the depreciation of the Syrian pound to speculative traders' manipulation in the black market, the state-run SANA news agency reported on Friday.

"The decline in the Syrian pound over the past two days was not caused by supply and demand issues. Rather, it was caused by speculative traders' manipulation in the black market. These traders were after brisk and outrageous profits," Mohammad Julailati was quoted by SANA as saying.

"Those manipulators are enemies of our people," said the minister, charging that some Arab TVs have used the currency depreciation to deceive the Syrian people that the nation's economy is in a bad shape.

In the past few days, the U.S. dollar was gaining value against the Syrian pound every passing hour and reached above 100 pounds in the black market on Wednesday, according to Julailati.

However, the central bank intervened on Thursday by officially announcing the exchange rate of the U.S. dollars at 80 Syrian pounds, forcing the black market to sell the dollars at the same rate, the minister said.

Since the eruption of unrest in Syria in March 2011, people have been rushing to change their Syrian pounds into U.S. dollars or gold to protect their wealth against the instability, bearing in mind what had happened in neighboring Lebanon after the eruption of civil war in 1975.

Editor:Zhang Hao |Source: Xinhua

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