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Demand for Foreign Currency Fell Sharply in Kazakhstan

Kazakhstanis have become much less likely to purchase foreign currency. NUR.KZ journalists learned how much the country’s foreign exchange market sank compared to previous periods. 

Wishing to keep their savings, Kazakhstanis resort to various financial instruments. Some, for example, prefer to keep money on deposits in banks. According to analysts, this method turned out to be one of the most effective. 

Others, for this purpose, acquire foreign currency, which in some cases may be more stable than the tenge. However, there has been a noticeable decline in the foreign exchange market. 

According to the National Bank of the Republic of Kazakhstan , in April of this year, net sales (sales minus purchases of currency by exchange offices) of foreign currency in Kazakhstan amounted to 84.3 billion tenge. 

For comparison: a month earlier, this figure was equal to 146.7 billion tenge , and in April 2022 – 226 billion tenge . In other words, demand for the year sank by more than 62.7%. 

What currency did the people of Kazakhstan buy? 

It is worth noting that demand fell for all major foreign currencies. For example, “net” sales of US dollars in April amounted to 73.2 billion tenge , while a year ago this figure was as much as 189.2 billion tenge. 

Moreover, in four regions of the country at once – in Abay, Akmola, East Kazakhstan and Zhetysu regions – the population sold dollars more often than bought, and thus the net sales of the American currency here were negative. 

A similar situation is observed with the euro. Its net sales in April amounted to 11.3 billion tenge against 24.6 billion tenge a year earlier. 

As for the Russian ruble, here sales turned out to be completely negative – minus 653.3 million tenge. Most often, they “got rid” of it in Almaty, where net sales amounted to minus 2.95 billion tenge. 

It should be noted that since the beginning of this year, the ruble only once, in March, went “in plus”, when its “net” sales amounted to 60.1 million tenge. In January and February they were negative – minus 7.3 billion and minus 1.1 billion tenge , respectively. 

For comparison: in April last year, net sales of the ruble amounted to 11.9 billion tenge. In March, this figure was equal to 58.8 billion tenge , in February – 75.4 billion tenge , and in January – in general 80.9 billion tenge. 

In addition to these three currencies, Kazakhstanis also purchased the Chinese yuan, whose net sales in April of this year amounted to 76.1 million tenge , and the British pound – 394.6 million tenge . 

However, these two currencies have not previously been in special demand among the inhabitants of the country. Only once, in March 2022, has there been a noticeable increase in the popularity of the yuan.