Cabinet has today decided that all fees and taxes payable to the government must be paid in local currency, in a bid to overcome the dollar shortage currently being experienced in the country.
The decision comes after President’s official visit to Seychelles, following which President Mohamed Nasheed met with the press and shared advice from the Seychelles Finance Ministry and Central Bank Governor to insist on the use of local currency as legal tender.
Speaking to the press, Nasheed said he met with the Governor of Seychelles Central Bank and Finance Ministry’s Principal Secretary for Finance and Trade Ahmed Afif.
‘’I had a long discussion with Mr Afif and Governor of Seychelles over this issue,’’ President Nasheed said. ‘’We are on the right path now, we can reform our economy better than Seychelles.’’
Nasheed said Afif continuously told him to use local currency as the legal tender to overcome the dollar shortage.
‘’They advised us to use local currency as the lead currency, so for example all taxes have to paid in Maldivian rufiya.’’
Nasheed explained that if the Maldivian rufiya was used as the lead currency, all resorts and individuals would have to change dollars into Maldivian ruffiya to pay the taxes and fees to the government.
‘’To get Maldivian ruffiya they will have to go to the banks, which will increase the amount of dollars that the banks will have,’’ Nasheed added.
The President also noted that the inflation rate of Maldives was low compared to neighboring countries.
‘’I did check the price of diesel and rice and flour, it is still cheaper in the Maldives,’’ he said.