Lebanon Businessnews News

Electronic money transfers
to be paid in dollar once again
Central Bank measure applies

to non-banking transfer companies

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Electronic money transfers from abroad carried through non-banking companies must be paid in US dollars, according to a circular issued by the Central Bank (BDL).

The decision overrules a BDL circular released last April that had required such transfers be paid in lira at the exchange rate set by the Central Bank’s foreign exchange platform (currently at around LL3,800 to the dollar).

The circular comes as part of a series of decisions taken since January 2019 that at one time required these payments to be made in liras and then to be followed by another decision requiring payments in dollars.

Mohamad Farran, General Manager at OMT, said they have set up a cash management department to handle the logistics of distributing dollar banknotes on their 50 agents across the country.

Farran said that money transfer companies have stopped sending money to their agents through banks since the outbreak of anti-government protests. This is because the banks have started to charge very high fees and to delay the payment of the funds for a week or even ten days, he said. In peak days, inbound transfers through OMT alone could reach $8 million to $9 million, according to Farran.
Reported by Shikrallah Nakhoul
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Date Posted: Aug 07, 2020