The unit of currency is the Guyana dollar which floats against the US dollar. US dollars are widely accepted. British, Canadian and some other bank notes may be accepted as well. Foreign currency can be changed at banks, finance houses and cambios. Many hotels change money but the rate is generally lower.
Guyana has abolished all exchange controls and bank and non-bank cambios easily facilitate the conversion and payment of foreign currency. The Customs Act requires a declaration to the Comptroller of Customs when bringing in or taking out of Guyana more than ten thousand US dollars or its equivalent in any other currency.
The Bank of Guyana Act 1998 provides that all monetary obligations or transactions in Guyana (whether imposed or authorised by a law or otherwise) are deemed to be expressed and recorded, and shall be settled, in Guyana dollars unless otherwise provided for by law or agreed to between the Parties. But such an agreement requires the permission of the Bank of Guyana after consultation with the Minister of Finance.
Non-resident Companies require permission of the Minister of Finance to borrow funds locally.
Under the Foreign Exchange Miscellaneous Act 1996, the permission of the Minister of Finance is required for: the lending to or borrowing from any person in Guyana, other than an authorised dealer of any gold or foreign currency; the act of any person resident in Guyana which involves, is in association with, or is preparatory to borrowing any gold or foreign currency from, or lending any gold or foreign currency to any person outside Guyana; the operation of a foreign currency account; and the lending by a person in Guyana of money or securities to a company resident in Guyana but controlled by a person resident outside Guyana.
The Investment Act 2004 also allows for the repatriation of interest, capital and income by foreign Companies and their personnel. The repatriation of capital out of Guyana is not subject to taxation.
These are licensed currency exchange houses. Most cambios are open from 8am to 5pm, and on Saturdays from 8am to 12pm, sometimes to 2pm. Retain your cambio receipt, you will need to produce them in order to change Guyanese dollars on departure.
Currency can also be exchanged at most of the commercial banks in Guyana. A list of banks is below.
Major credit cards and travellers’ cheques are accepted by most hotels, restaurants, car rental agencies and tour operators. International Visa, Mastercard, Maestro and Cirrus credit and debit cards can be used to obtain cash from the Bank of Nova Scotia in Branch during banking hours or at ABMs. A similar service is also available at the Guyana Bank for Trade and Industry (GBTI) at their branches and at select ATM locations.
GUYANA STOCK EXCHANGE
Guyana Association of Securities Companies and Intermediaries Inc. (GASCI) is a “self-regulatory organisation” which was formed for the purpose of developing a Stock Market in Guyana. It is the result of earlier work undertaken by the Adam Smith Institute funded by the UK Department.
GASCI was incorporated on 1st June 2001. Trading commenced on 30th June 2003. The Stock Exchange was formally launched on 25th September 2003. Its members comprise the four securities companies registered to trade on the Stock Exchange viz. Beharry Stockbrokers Ltd., Guyana America Merchant Bank Inc. and Trust Company (Guyana) Ltd. It is governed by a Board of six Directors. Trading currently takes place on Mondays and Wednesdays. When Monday is a holiday, trading starts at 10.00am.
Further information on GASCI can be accessed at their website: http://www.gasci.com.
Tel: +44 207 229 7684
Fax: +44 207 727 9807
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