South Sudan orders informal forex dealers to register

Saturday February 24 2024
south sudan dollar transfer

People jostle to exchange their currencies in a local bank in Juba, South Sudan. PHOTO | REUTERS


The Bank of South Sudan (BoSS) has issued a 45-day notice to unauthorised forex dealers to formally register as currency exchange agents and comply with the relevant laws, marking the third and final phase of the war against informal forex dealers.

Juba’s World Bank-funded financial sector modernisation and reform plan is seeking to dismantle parallel forex markets, rein in money launders and address the banking sector’s weaknesses and vulnerabilities.

The regulator, in a press statement dated February 16, said all foreign exchange dealers are required to rent shops in designated locations and comply with all the relevant legislations including the foreign exchange law and the laws related to anti-money laundering and counterterrorism.

Read: S.Sudan cracks whip on informal forex dealers

“To continuously engage diverse stakeholders on formalising unauthorised foreign exchange dealers, the Bank of South Sudan introduces fresh measures and prudential guidelines to regulate the unauthorised currency dealers across the market,” said Governor James Alic Garang.

“Starting Monday, current unauthorised dealers are given 45 days to formally register as currency exchange agents, thereby complying with the regulations and guidelines,” the central bank said.


The forex dealers are required to comply with foreign exchange law and the laws related to anti-money laundering and counter-terrorism.
“The Bank of South Sudan reserves the right to always amend or alter in whole or in part any related policy with regard to these new measures and regulations,” said Dr Garang.

The existence of informal foreign exchange markets in Juba has largely been blamed for fueling currency speculation and hyperinflation thereby increasing the cost of living in the country and causing foreign banks operating in Juba to post monetary losses.

Under the reform plan, informal forex dealers are required to form umbrella associations or organise themselves into structured groups, operate in permanent structures from designated locations, apply for registration from the Central Bank and pay taxes to the government.

“These measures are geared towards streamlining the FX trading while mitigating the related currency risks,” said Dr Garang.

Read: IMF detected in S.Sudan’s ban on US dollar transfers

“All these steps will eventually allow the Bank to gather credible and reliable statistics and data to formalise unauthorised dealers into the mainstream FX market.”

The BoSS said the restructuring of foreign exchange market will be implemented in three phases.

The initial phase allowed unauthorised dealers to operate in the open, under shades or under an umbrella for a period of 10 days up to December 14.