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Kazakh bank chief dismisses tenge devaluation 'rumour'

June 02, 2014, 14:27 UTC+3 ASTANA

Currency speculators provoked rumours 13 times a year, Kazakhstan's national bank governor Kayrat Kelimbetov says

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Kayrat Kelimbetov

Kayrat Kelimbetov

© ITAR-TASS/Valery Sharifulin

ASTANA, June 02. /ITAR-TASS/. Devaluation fears over Kazakhstan's tenge are groundless, national bank governor Kayrat Kelimbetov said on Monday. Currency speculators provoked rumours 13 times a year on average, he added.

Talk of devaluation was “rumour” and “somewhat illogical” amid recent rouble strengthening against the dollar, Kelimbetov said. But even if the Russian currency weakend slightly, “we have a margin of safety”, he added.

The tenge exchange rate now stands at the low end of the national bank’s range of 183 tenge to the dollar. The official rate at June 2 is 183.50 to the US currency.

In February, the national bank carried out a one-off devaluation, cutting the rate 20% to 183 tenge to the dollar.

Kelimbetov said the bank and the government planned a dedollarization programme by the year-end, aimed at increasing the tenge's appeal as a preferred investment and deposit currency.

“But we are not planning any artificial or non-market measures so I believe there are no reasons for concern,” the governor added, estimating dollarization of Kazakhstan's economy at 40-50% against Russia’s 20%

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