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COVID-19: The Reserve Bank Of Fiji Tightens Its Exchange Control Policy Requirements

These changes include reduction in delegated limits and suspension of certain facilities and are aimed to protect Fiji’s balance of payments. The RBF will review these policies at the end of the year.
03 Apr 2020 11:29
COVID-19: The Reserve Bank Of Fiji Tightens Its Exchange Control Policy Requirements
Reserve Bank of Fiji.

In light of the adverse impact of COVID-19 on the economy, in particular the income from tourism and remittances, the Reserve Bank of Fiji (“RBF”) has tightened the exchange control policy requirements with immediate effect.

These changes include reduction in delegated limits and suspension of certain facilities and are aimed to protect Fiji’s balance of payments. The RBF will review these policies at the end of the year.

Tightening of Exchange Controls

According to BDO Fiji’s Update on Exchange Control Measures, it stated: “Exchange Control encompasses Government’s regulations with regard to the buying and selling of foreign currency and related transactions between Fiji and the rest of the world.

“In light of the adverse impact of COVID-19 on the economy and the need to safeguard one of the Reserve Bank of Fiji’s core objectives of maintaining adequate foreign reserves, the Reserve Bank of Fiji has tightened exchange controls with immediate effect from yesterday.

These changes include:

  • Reduced delegated authority limits to authorised foreign exchange dealers (commercial banks, restricted foreign exchange dealers and other licenced foreign exchange dealers).

There are number of transactions which will continue to be delegated to authorised dealers, but at lower limits and with additional documentary requirements and conditions.

  • Number of facilities that will now require the approval of the Reserve Bank of Fiji, instead of approvals by authorised dealers under delegated authority.
  • Suspension of certain foreign exchange facilities.

The changes mostly impact capital and personal transactions.

Trade related transactions generally remains unchanged.

However, it is expected trade related transactions will now be monitored and scrutinised closely by authorised dealers and Reserve Bank.

Exchange Control Transactions and Delegated Limits

The attached QR code (with details on type of payments, delegated limits to authorised dealers, documentary requirements and other terms, conditions and limits) issued by Reserve Bank yesterday.

It highlights and summarises the revised Exchange Control Policy Guidelines effective from April 2.

The reduced delegated limits, includes payments for:

  • Credit card payments
  • Debit card facility
  • Emigration allowance
  • Loan repayments
  • Withdrawal of investments
  • Remittance of dividends or profits.

“Offshore investment is suspended.

“As per the previous guidelines, payments that are not delegated to authorised dealers or fall outside the delegated authority limits are required to be referred to the Reserve Bank together with the relevant documentation for processing,” the BDO update said.

Feedback: maraia.vula@fijisun.com.fj



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