Burundi’s Central Bank (BRB) on Friday announced a ceiling for cash withdrawals and deposits to all commercial and micro finance banks starting January 16th, 2023.
“Any account holder of a credit institution or microfinance institution can only withdraw in cash an amount less than or equal to BIF 15 million per day and BIF 100million per month,” a statement reads from the Central Bank Governor.
This comes as allegations of money laundering have been reported in the country for the recent past years, compounded with high corruption rate.
“In order to reduce cash handling, modernize the foreign exchange field and, above all fight against money laundering the Central Bank has put limitations on withdrawing money,” a statement reads.
The new measure means only an amount less than or equal to BIF 20 million per day can be deposited and beyond that ceiling, the origin of the funds must be justified.
“The measures on withdrawals and payments enter into force respectively on 16 January 2023 and 15 February 2023, and apply to both natural and legal persons. Before the granted deadline, payments and withdrawals are free.”
Burundi maintained its place for three consecutive years in as far as corruption is concerned according to the 2021 report from Transparency International.
Burundi was ranked as the 169th with 19 points out of 180 countries leaving behind 11 countries as corruption levels remained stagnant worldwide compared to the previous year.
For transactions of large amounts of money beyond the aforementioned ceilings, and even those of small amounts, the country’s Central Bank (BRB) encouraged the public to reduce cash handling as much as possible by exploiting the other financial products and services at their disposal, including cheque remittances, account-to-account transfers and digital financial services.