Dollar exchange rate shoots past Tk 100 for the first time in Bangladesh

Volatility in the foreign exchange market intensified today amid a scarcity of the American greenback, forcing travellers to spend as high as Tk 102 to buy a US dollar from banks, the highest in Bangladesh.

Some banks have imposed the rate on travellers as they are facing a shortage of cash dollars, said officials of three banks, requesting not to be named.

Importers also had to pay a maximum of Tk 97 per dollar to settle import bills, up from Tk 95-96 on Monday, even though the Bangladesh Bank injected $96 million into the market to restore stability.

The central bank has so far injected a record $5.31 billion in the current fiscal year to lessen the US dollar shortage faced by banks.

Although the central bank has instructed banks to charge importers Tk 87.60 per dollar, banks are compelled to ignore the directive due to the falling supply of the American greenback against surging demand to settle import bills.

On Monday, the BB devalued the local currency by 0.91 per cent to Tk 87.50 a dollar, the sharpest single-day fall in the past decade and the fifth depreciation this year.

The exchange rate stood at Tk 85.80 a dollar on December 30 and Tk 84.80 on May 16 last year.