Azerbaijani CBA denies illegal foreign currency transfers abroad in 2020 (UPDATE)

Details added: first version posted on 16:21

BAKU, Azerbaijan, Apr.8

By Zeyni Jafarov - Trend:

The Central Bank of Azerbaijan (CBA) commented on the information, spread by the media citing the Accounts Chamber’s report on the results of its activities for 2020, about the illegal transfer of foreign currency abroad, Trend reports referring to a source in the CBA.

According to the source, the chamber’s report covers the results of 2019, not 2020, and the facts shown in it reflect shortcomings in the field of customs administration within the framework of inspections carried out by the General Customs Administration for Air Transport.

The source said that during the reporting year, commercial banks operating in Azerbaijan officially transferred nearly 1.1 billion manat ($650 million) abroad. These operations were also aimed at replenishing correspondent accounts of banks with foreign banks in accordance with the usual practice.

Besides, the source noted that over 90 percent of cash foreign currency was transferred abroad in euro. After the decision of the European Central Bank to demonetize banknotes with a denomination of 500 euro, banks exported banknotes of this denomination for their transfer to correspondent accounts in foreign banks. Another part of the transfers was intended for settlements in foreign banks, as well as for placement in non-resident banks to generate income. In all cases, these were funds not from clients, but from the banks themselves.

As the source further noted, the transfer of foreign currency cash is an official banking operation, regulated by business processes, regulatory documents, and also strictly controlled by the relevant authorities.

"All these transactions were recorded in the official reports of the banks themselves, in the reports submitted to the Central Bank, as well as in the payment balance report," concluded the source.

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Follow the author on Twitter: @jafarov_zeyni

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