No extra fee on foreign currency sales: central bank

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The State Bank of Vietnam said it has not made any decision on allowing banks to charge transaction fees when selling foreign currency to individuals.

Some newspapers have reported that such a fee would be charged, but at this point that's just a wish expressed by local banks, central bank Governor Nguyen Van Giau told Thanh Nien on Thursday.

Several bankers have said they want to charge a fee of 2 percent when selling foreign currencies to individuals to help them cover costs.

A bank executive said the fee will allow banks to prepare a sufficient amounts of foreign currency to meet the demand of individual clients. It will also help narrow the gap between unofficial and black-market exchange rates, he said.

Meanwhile, the DongABank and Eximbank have both confirmed that they will not impose any additional fee on foreign currency sales. The latter said it sells 400,000-500,000 US dollars a month to students studying abroad.

Vietnamese banks are required to sell dollars to individual clients who provide evidence that they are going to travel, study or seek medical treatment abroad.

Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung on March 15 confirmed the government's intention to tighten controls over foreign currency transactions. A crackdown on illegal dollar hoarding and trading was launched late last month, bringing the black market to a standstill.

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