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BCT denies officially the affair of Leila Ben AliEoACAOs 1.5 tons of gold.

In a telephone conversation with Habib Maalej, Managing Director of the General Fund of Counters and National Payments,Ee which is the keeper of the gold reserves at the Central Bank of Tunisia, has categorically denied the release of any ounce of gold reserves of the central bank. "I was very surprised to read this information and I affirm and confirm that the gold reserves in Tunisia are very well preserved and no ounce was brought out," said Habib Maalej, adding that "the BCT is an institution that has its rules and procedures, and I have not received any verbal or written instructions from the Governor to bring out our gold reserves."

Gold reserves, we are told in the BCT, consists of commercial gold and currency gold which is the counterpart in gold of circulating money. Until late 2010, 187 kg were released for sale to jewelers and since the beginning of 2011, no ounce has been brought out or sold andEe the BCT was able to even recover some 5 kg of customs seizures.

Regarding monetary gold, its level, which is audited annually by an external auditor, has not been changed in 10 years. It amounts now at to 5.3 tons with a carrying value of 4.4 million TD, Maalej Habib told us.

We are assured also at BCT that all Tunisian banks have taken the necessary conservative measures on the accounts of members of the former regime and people who fled the country and that since Saturday all their cards were deactivated.

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Publication:African Manager
Date:Jan 17, 2011
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