Syrian pound records lowest in black market since beginning of crisis

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DAMASCUS, /Xinhua/

The Syrian pound has reached the lowest against the U.S. dollars in the black market since the beginning of the crisis more than eight years ago, the al-Watan newspaper reported on Sunday.

The Syrian pound is now sold in the black market at 660 Syrian pounds for the dollar, the lowest exchange rate in the black market since the beginning of the Syrian war amid high demands and low supplies of the dollar, according to the report.

The paper cited economic experts as saying that the reasons behind the devaluation of the Syrian currency are not clear.

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It said some experts suggested a hard crackdown on currency speculation in the black market and imposing measures to push the visitors of the country to exchange their foreign currency according to the official exchange rates.

The depreciation of the Syrian pound comes also in light of the tightened Western sanctions on the country.

The United States and its Western allies tightened their already-imposed sanctions on Syria earlier this year, trying also to suffocate the devilry of fuel to the country.

The Syrian government has been trying to overcome some of the obstacles resulted from the sanctions by holding fairs and encouraging foreign investments in the country.

On Thursday, the Damascus International Fair, the main trade fair in the country, wrapped up with hundreds of local and foreign companies taking part.

The Syrian government said the fair, which is the Syrian economic window to the world, aims to send a message of “victory” to the world after the victories of the Syrian army in the battles against the foreign-backed rebels in northwestern Syria.

However, the U.S. threatened to impose sanctions on foreign companies that take part in the fair, as part of the efforts to further isolate the administration of President Bashar al-Assad.

On Sunday, the third International Trade Union Forum of Solidarity with Syrian Workers and People kicked off in the face of the economic blockade with wide Arab and international participation, according to state news agency SANA.

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