Foreign Currency

National Bank institutes largest package of currency liberalization measures since February 2022

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The National Bank of Ukraine (NBU) announced on May 3 that it was implementing the largest set of currency liberalization measures since the beginning of the full-scale war.

The measures are aimed at decreasing restrictions on businesses and currency controls. Ukraine implemented strict controls over its currency and tightly regulated foreign exchanges in 2022, hoping to stave off a collapse of the hryvnia.

“This move, together with other measures by the NBU, should allow Ukrainian businesses to ‘breathe to their full potential’ and help attract private capital to recover the economy,” said NBU Governor Andriy Pyshnyy.

In a statement posted on the NBU website, the bank wrote that most of the measures would come into force on May 4.

The package consisted of the following six measures:

  • the removal of all currency restrictions on the import of goods and services
  • the possibility for businesses to repatriate new dividends
  • the ability to transfer funds abroad for the purpose of renting or leasing
  • the easing of restrictions on the repayment of new external loan
  • the ability to repay interest on old external loans
  • the relaxing of restrictions on the transfer of foreign currency from representative offices to their parent companies

The NBU wrote that the measures would lead to “a gradual increase in export revenue to Ukraine” and help Ukrainian businesses “to enter new markets, including those from which companies from (Russia) are displaced due to sanctions.”

Following an almost 30% drop in Ukraine’s GDP after the full-scale invasion, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) predicted in April that the GDP would grow by 3.2% in 2024 and possibly up to 6.5% in 2025.

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