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Ruble is taken in Simferopol shops, not yet at filling stations

March 26, 2014, 18:15 UTC+3 SIMFEROPOL

Restaurants, cafes and hotels pioneered use of roubles before official start of currency’s circulation in Crimea on March 24

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© ITAR-TASS/Alexander Ryumin

SIMFEROPOL, March 26. /ITAR-TASS/. Almost all shops in Simferopol have started taking roubles, yet the change is still being given in hryvnias, CrimeaInform reports. The exchange rate is almost everywhere 3.8 roubles per hryvnia.

The process of payment is somewhat delayed as cashiers thoroughly examinate roubles, including 50-rouble and 100-rouble notes, for authenticity.

Until Wednesday, shops remained one of the major market segments that had not taken roubles. Restaurants, cafes and some hotels pioneered the use of roubles before the official start of the currency’s circulation in Crimea on March 24. However, many shops are still giving receipts in hryvnias explaining that cash register machines have not yet been reprogrammed. Some shops are going to install additional machines to produce receipts in roubles.

Gasoline is not yet to be purchased for roubles; filling stations in Simferopol and the suburb do not give forecasts as to when it may happen.

Rouble payments are not yet in practice in all pharmacies. Employees say transition to the ruble is inevitable in the near term as pensioners started receiving money in roubles on Tuesday, which means the Central Bank of Russia’s bills will soon start to replace hryvnias in Crimeans' pockets. Accordingly, pharmacy networks that are not taking roubles risk losing customers, primarily elderly people who are clearly a larger part of their clientele.

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