April 10, 2016 / 5:06 PM / 3 years ago

Angola's central bank says sells more than $300 mln to commercial banks

LUANDA, April 10 (Reuters) - Angola central bank has sold more than $300 million to commercial banks over the past week to stabilise the foreign currency market, it said in a statement on Sunday.

The Bank of Angola said it had injected $314 million into the system between April 5-7, amid an acute hard currency crunch which saw the kwanza weaken by more than 30 percent against the dollar last year.

A slide in the price of crude oil has hit Africa’s second largest oil exporter of the commodity, leading to chronic forex shortages and fuelling a thriving black market for currency.

Oil accounts for more than 95 percent of foreign exchange receipts.

On Sunday, the central bank’s website quoted the kwanza within a 162.082-163.703 range to the dollar, but it was trading much weaker, at around 440/dollar, on the informal market.

Last week, the central Bank of Angola said it had cut the amount of hard currency travellers could take abroad to $10,000 from $15,000, under new rules to cope with a decline in foreign exchange reserves. (Reporting by Herculano Coroado; Writing by Stella Mapenzauswa; Editing by Alison Williams)

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