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URGENT / Merchants in Najaf cease dealing in Iranian currency.

NAJAF / Aswat al-Iraq: The majority of merchants and businessmen in the Shiite holy cities of Najaf and Karbala have decided to cease dealing with the Iranian currency of Tuman, due to what they described as loss of half its value, compared to the Iraqi dinar, according to exchange dealers in both cities on Tuesday. "The value of the Iranian Tuman has dropped to very low levels, as its value compared with the Iraqi dinar has reached to 500 dinars, whilst its previous value had exceeded 1,000 dinars," Abu-Ibrahim al-Yassiry, the owner of an exchange company told Aswat al-Iraq news agency, adding that "the decrease had made merchants and owners of trade shops cease dealing with the Tuman and insisting to deal with the Iraqi dinar and the US dollar," Yassiry said. "The markets in Najaf and Karbala have witnessed a huge offer for the Tuman, thing that dropped its value to reach 300 dinars," he added. The owner of a garments shop told Aswat al-Iraq, Murtada al-Khazaaly, told Aswat al-Iraq: "the drop in the value of the Iranian Tuman had forced Iranian visitors to buy presents and goods from Iraqi markets," adding that "the Iranian visitor was greatly shocked when he noticed that the value of the Tuman had dropped highly in Iraq". As for the Chairman of Najaf's Chamber of Commerce, Zuhair Sharba, he told Aswat al-Iraq that "the drop in the value of the Iranian Tuman shall help to increase the purchasing potential of the Iraqi merchant," adding that "in the event of the transfer of dealing from the Tuman to the Iraqi dinar, shall cause the decrease of the number of Iranian visitors, who exceed 6,000 visitors daily and who stay for 10 days, during which they visit the Shiite holy shrines in Najaf, Karbala, Baghdad and Samarra. The city of Najaf is 160 km to the south of Baghdad. SKH (TI)

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Publication:Aswat al-Iraq (Erbil, Iraq)
Geographic Code:7IRAQ
Date:Jan 24, 2012
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