May 18, 2016, 4:29 PM
the last few months and weeks, we have noticed the depreciation of the Gambian
dalasi, which is presently affecting the daily life of people, especially those
doing business, as trading in goods and services has become more challenging.
We have noticed that the Euro has gone up by 12 per cent against the dollar and the CFA has also risen in value against the dalasi.
Currently major trading currencies such as the Pound Sterling is bought for D62.50 and sold for D62.00; the dollar is bought for D47.50 and sold for 48.20, the Euro is bought for D54.25 and sold for D55.25; and the CFA (5000) is bought for D410 and sold for D415.
Each day prices are shooting up all because of the instability of the dalasi, which, according to our finding, is precipitated in recent weeks and days mainly by three major factors: preparation for the hajj, for Tobaski and the tourism off season.
It is therefore vital that officials of the Ministry of Finance and the Central Bank of The Gambia engage in dialogue with foreign exchange dealers to take remedial actions in solving the exchange rate challenge and price escalation.
Although excessive demand for foreign currencies always lead to the depreciation of the local currency it is essential that proper mechanisms are put in place to check the rate or speed at which the local currency is losing its value so that the effect on prices of goods and services is cushioned and managed well, thereby maintaining sanity in the economy and breathing space for the layman who lives on one or two dollars a day.
If ‘artificial’ factors to inflation such as the pilgrimage to Mecca, and preparation for Tobaski could cause serious damage to economic stability and escalate hardship and stress for the people in the country then there is need for serious tact to handle such situations when they are confronted by the nation.
Also, when prices are shot up by factors of inflation it is always difficult to restore the prices of goods and services affected when such factors have also been treated and restored.
This is why we are calling on the relevant authorities to apply their professionalism and knowledge to mitigate this current challenge and get things under control.
national economy is a feat of tact and tact and tact.”