Georgia's lari sinks to 2015 low as foreign markets plummet

GMT 21:41 2015 Tuesday ,25 August

Arab Today, arab today Georgia's lari sinks to 2015 low as foreign markets plummet

Man leaves a foreign exchange currency office
Tbilisi - AFP

The currency of ex-Soviet Georgia reached its lowest value this year on Tuesday following the nosedive of global markets over concerns about the Chinese economy.

The lari fell more than two percent, slipping to 2.416 against the dollar in the biggest one-day drop since March.

The lari's current rate approaches the currency's all-time low of 2.45 against the greenback, a rate it reached in March 1999.

The lari -- which drastically depreciated last November before stabilising this summer -- has also depreciated against the euro, dropping to 2.77 against the European single currency on Tuesday.

Russia's economic turmoil and volatility on international markets has sent shock waves through the small South Caucasian state and other former Soviet republics.

Earlier this week, the Russian ruble reached its lowest point this year, passing the symbolic 80-ruble mark for the first time since December and dropping to more than 70 rubles against the dollar.

Kazakhstan's currency, the tenge, fell a record 23 percent last week following the country's switch from a costly currency corridor with the dollar to a free-floating exchange rate as the energy-rich country grapples with lower energy prices.

In Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan, dollars were being sold at five to six percent above their respective official rates last Friday.

Georgian Prime Minister Irakli Garibashvili called on the population to remain calm in light of the national currency's depreciation.

"The population and businessmen should not give in to this stir and chaos caused by the media, irresponsible experts and politicians," he said.

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