Kenya to Buy Oil for Local Currency Instead of US Dollars

Demand for US greenback is expected to drop once the deal is signed

Image Credits: SIMON MAINA/AFP via Getty Images.

Kenyan President William Ruto signed an agreement with Saudi Arabia to buy oil for Kenyan shillings instead of US dollars.

As the US currency exchange rate hit 145.5 shillings due to increased demand by importers, President Ruto accused oil cartels of stockpiling American dollars in response to the crisis, sparking fuel shortages throughout Kenya.

“I’ll give you free advice, those of you who are hoarding dollars, you certainly might go into losses, you better do what you need to do, because this market is going to be different in a couple of weeks,” said Ruto.

Demand for the US greenback is expected to drop once the deal is signed to import fuel on credit by the Kenyan and Saudi governments. According to Ruto, this step should “ensure dollar availability.”

“In the next couple of weeks, dollar availability is going to be very different, because our fuel companies will now be paying for fuel in Kenyan shillings,” the president said at the Nairobi Stock Exchange on March 22, as reported by media.

Kenya imports the vast majority of its fuel from countries like Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates, among others, and pays in dollars.

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