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CGB Governor Reports A 2.7% Depreciation Of Dalasi Against US Dollar in Four Months

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Buah Saidy, Governor of the Central Bank of the Gambia

By Buba Gagigo

Buah Saidy, Governor of the Central Bank of The Gambia, has indicated that the Gambian Dalasi experienced a depreciation of 2.7%, 2.3%, and 0.1% against the US dollar, Euro, and CFA, respectively, from June to September 2023. However, it appreciated by 1.5% against the British Pound Sterling.

Despite the challenging global environment, Saidy highlighted the Dalasi’s overall stability against major currencies. The moderate depreciation against three key currencies was attributed to increased demand for foreign currencies to finance a rising import bill.

Saidy noted, “The Dalasi continues to be relatively stable against major currencies, despite the challenging global environment. However, owing to excessive demand for foreign currencies to finance the rising import bill, the Dalasi depreciated moderately against three major traded currencies. From June to September 2023, it depreciated by 2.7 percent, 2.3 percent, and 0.1 percent against the US dollar, Euro, and CFA, respectively, but appreciated by 1.5 percent against the British Pound Sterling,” he said.

The Central Bank Governor provided insights into the stable foreign exchange market, highlighting robust activity amid improved liquidity conditions. Total foreign currency activities, encompassing sales and purchases, amounted to US$2.1 billion from January to September 2023, slightly lower than the US$2.5 billion recorded in the same period in 2022.

Saidy also mentioned that remittance inflows for the same period reached US$564.1 million, reflecting a 4.5% increase compared to the corresponding period a year ago.

“From January to September 2023, remittance inflows amounted to US$564.1 million, representing a 4.5 percent increase when compared with the corresponding period a year ago,” the Central Bank Governor said.

He said the Central Bank of the Gambia continues to hold a comfortable level of foreign exchange reserves, totaling US$389.1 million as of September 30, 2023, which he said is sufficient to cover over 4 months of prospective imports of goods and services.

Addressing inflation, Saidy reported a moderation in October 2023, breaking the upward trend observed since the beginning of the year. Headline inflation decreased to 18.0% in October 2023, down from 18.5% in September 2023. This decline was attributed to decreases in both the food and non-food components of the Consumer Price Index (CPI) basket. Looking ahead, the Governor anticipated that the easing of global commodity prices and an expected better cropping season would alleviate domestic price pressures.

Food inflation decreased to 23.8% in October 2023 from 24.9% in June 2023, with bread and cereals accounting for most of the decline. Non-food inflation remained unchanged at 11.5% in October 2023 compared to June 2023.

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