Thu | Aug 17, 2017

Shaw says no shortage of foreign exchange

Published:Tuesday | September 20, 2016 | 9:50 PM
Finance Minister Audley Shaw

Jovan Johnson, Staff Reporter

The Finance Minister Audley Shaw is insisting that there's no shortage of foreign exchange despite what he calls legitimate concerns about the depreciation in the value of the Jamaican dollar against the United States currency.

The value of the Jamaican dollar has dropped by 4.8 per cent for the financial year to date compared with a 3.2 per cent depreciation for the similar period last year.

This afternoon, Shaw told the Parliament that he recognises the related concern among local businesses.

However, he says the Bank of Jamaica has indicated that the recent movements are in line with expectations.

Shaw says the Central Bank has explained that the 4.8 per cent year to date depreciation reflects the excessive movement of 3.6 per cent that took place during the June quarter when there were unusually large capital account transactions.

According to the minister, additional demand last month correlates with increased private sector credit expansion and a surge in imports.

He said the BoJ, met the demand through active intervention which benefited the manufacturing, distribution and energy sectors.

Meanwhile, the Opposition Spokesman on Finance, Dr Peter Phillips says amid the concerns about the exchange rate, the Government must ensure that there is no disruption to the economy.

It is now costing J$127.92 for US$1.