Mahathir Indicates Exchange Rate Will Be Fixed Next Month

September 2, 1998 - 0:0
KUALA LUMPUR Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad indicated Tuesday that the Malaysian exchange rate would be fixed next month as part of foreign exchange controls announced earlier by the Central Bank. Speaking on national television after the new controls were announced, Mahathir said the government had decided that there would be no value attached to the Malaysian ringgit outside of Malaysia. Mahathir said the measures announced by the Malaysian Central Bank could be considered a last resort and that ringgit not repatriated by the end of September would be invalid. The exchange rate will be fixed, he said, asserting that this would encourage investment from foreigners. With a fixed exchange rate, they stand a much better chance of making a good profit, he said. Mahathir added that high-denomination bank notes for 1,000 rinngit ($250) and 500 ringgit ($125) would be demonetised to discourage people from carrying currency into and out of the country. The prime minister also indicated that malaysian cash carried by travellers would be confiscated if it exceeded 10,000 ringgit for residents or 1,000 ringgit for non-residents. (AFP)