Feature: Venezuelans with money transfers in dollars take advantage of the new official parity
The Venezuelan Government is able, for the first time this year, to attract those who receive foreign currency transfers within the strict currency controls that have been in place since 2003, having given an official exchange rate higher than the unaltered parallel market.
Thousands of customers launched Tuesday in front of Italcambio offices in Caracas and wanted to exchange their currency through the official channel after years of taking care of the black market. The company is one of the few authorized by the government to sell and buy foreign currency, but requests several measures to obtain the exchange.
Remittances have increased more and more because about three million people have emigrated since 2015 from the country, hit by hyperinflation and lack of food and medicine.
"It's worth coming, at least for now," said Laura España as she left the offices where she dealt with for the second time in recent days, the money sent by her son from abroad.
For two weeks, the Venezuelan National Bank (BCV) has set the official exchange rate of 3,297 Bolivar, a parity that for the first time exceeds the dollar's dollar market rate of around 2,448 Bolivar, according to the Dolar Today website.
Gabet surprised the participants in the local market, which for years saw how Nicolás Maduro's government failed the Venezuelans to change their money transfers in the official system without being able to stop an increase in the dollar in parallel with the strict exchange rules.
After over 3,000 Bolivar Dollar is the unregulated interest rate decrease in recent days due to a strong mortgagee's restriction with a measure that forced the bank to sterilize its reserves in local currency at the central bank.
The parity of the informal market, which was always above what was set by the BCV, served as a reference for most of the local economy prices and contributed to pressure inflation, which, according to Congress, reached nearly two million percent in 2018.
After the Bolivar weakened close to 99 percent in the black market in 2018, the central bank chose to recognize this dollar rate in January and even established a higher rate, very attractive to those who sought to cover their expenses by a few dollars. extra material.
"I ask for help to buy some drugs with someone living abroad," said Anggy Ochoa, a student who had to queue to withdraw bolivars from the exchange four days after she treated the transfer. "I do this because the price is a little higher," he added.
Most of those who exchange bolivares for dollars usually agree on transactions in person, via social networks or text messages, and currency transfers are made through foreign accounts.
The same thing happened to Geovany Villarroel, a bank employee who this time preferred to sell his $ 35 in cash at the government office approved by the government and not with relatives who contacted his mobile phone. In the office, he visited that he went in to buy up to $ 200 a. Could and charge a commission of 5 percent for the operation.
Thanks to the attractive official change, agencies like Italcambio take around $ 70,000 a day in cash or cash transfers during the last week. An amount up to ten times higher than what was completed at the end of 2018, said one source in the financial sector.
It was not possible to get a comment from Italcambio right away.
Consulting companies estimate that about $ 1,000 million of money transfers arrive annually.