The second allocation of retention dollars for the import of medicines, basic goods and fuel took place yesterday. This is reported by the Suriname Communication Service (CDS) in a press release. There are rules for application and allocation, which have been communicated to importers via the Central Bank of Suriname (CBvS) and the Surinamese Bankers Association (SBV). The dollars will be made available at the rate of SRD 16.30 to the US dollar.
Exporters of rice and wood now also comply with the payment obligation, although not everyone is participating yet. The gold sector continues to be the largest contributor. This is not surprising, because gold is the most important export product. The scheme is continuously evaluated and improved, so that every exporter pays and the remittance becomes easier. The Foreign Exchange Commission in particular is constantly in talks with the various exporters to realize tailor-made solutions.
The basic principle is that the retention scheme will be adhered to. This means that exporters are obliged to return 100 percent of their export earnings to Suriname and that they must sell 30 percent of it to the CBvS at the rate of 16.30. The dollars are only made available for necessary imports. They do not (yet) offer a solution for overdue payments for past deliveries.
Local entrepreneurs would like to qualify for these dollars for the import of raw materials and resources for local production. While this is a positive proposition, the retention yields are not yet sufficient to provide this. Based on historical data, imports of medicines require approximately US $ 1 million each month and imports of basic goods require approximately US $ 1.5 million. It turns out that there are suddenly many more applications for the retention dollars and that importers are filing the same applications at different banks at the same time. In such cases, these applications will not be fully granted.