Reserve bank authorities have announced that Bureaux de Change that closed last year increased compared to previous years. Mareledi Selabe, Communication Manager at Bank of Botswana confirmed that most of Bureaux de Change closed shop in 2018 due to non-compliance.
“A total of eight bureaux de change licenses were revoked in 2018, for various reasons, and this compares with two and six in 2017 and 2016, respectively,” said Selabe. According to BoB, five Bureaux de Change had their licenses revoked due to non-compliance with regulations, these include Travellers in Maun and Charles Hill, Simple Forex in Gaborone, Earthmark in Lobatse, Eagle Sight in Palapye and Dollar Wave in Palapye while Dubs in Lobatse, Maeto in Mahalapye and BT in Gaborone applied for voluntary closure.
“In instances of non-compliance, businesses are, as a matter of procedure, given time to regularise issues of serious concern before a licence can be revoked. For issues of less serious nature, imposed penalties include a written warning, fines and suspension of a license,” Selabe said.
Selabe said the reserve bank uses the Bank of Botswana Act, Bureaux de Change regulations and other relevant laws such as the Financial Intelligence Act and regulations to govern the issuance and regulation of a licence to operate a bureau de change business. She further said regulations details the conditions for the revocation of a licence and these include voluntary surrender and non-compliance with the Act and Regulations.
In 2017, two operators were voluntary closed, while in 2016 four were closed for non-compliance and two voluntary closed shop.