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Ukraine > Legal Developments > Law firm and leading lawyer rankings

Editorial

Currency Swaps and Other Hedging Instruments Now Permissible for Ukrainian Banks

On 13 April 2011 the National Bank of Ukraine (the "NBU") approved Resolution No. 111 "On Amendments to Certain Regulations of the National Bank of Ukraine" ("Resolution No. 111"), which is to amend, inter alia, the Regulation on the Procedure and Terms of Foreign Currency Trades, approved by the NBU Resolution No. 281 dated 10 August 2005.

Except for its currency swap related provisions, Resolution No. 111 entered into force on 20 May 2011. The currency swap related provisions come into effect on 30 May 2011. 

The amendments introduced by Resolution No. 111 are aimed at relaxing the NBU's administrative control over the foreign currency exchange market, and are expected to allow commercial banks in Ukraine to better manage their foreign currency exposure. 

FX Swaps

As of 30 May 2011, a Ukrainian commercial bank will be permitted to enter into a currency swap transaction with another Ukrainian bank. Such a transaction may either provide for (i) exchange of UAH into a major freely convertible foreign currency (such as USD, EUR, CHF, etc.); or (ii) exchange of amounts that are both denominated in major freely convertible foreign currencies (e.g., a EUR/USD swap). A Ukrainian bank will also be allowed to carry out swap transactions of the latter type with a non-Ukrainian counterparty. All the foregoing transactions must be settled within 365 days from their date of execution. 

Previously, Ukrainian banks were only allowed to enter into UAH/FX swap transactions with the NBU.

Other Hedging Instruments 

As of 20 May 2011, a Ukrainian commercial bank is also permitted, inter alia, to: 

(a) carry out currency exchange transactions subject to its open FX position limits only (previously, purchase of FX with UAH on the interbank currency market was allowed only to the extent necessary for such bank and its clients to discharge their obligations denominated in the respective foreign currency that had become due and payable); and

(b) purchase FX with UAH and sell FX for UAH on the interbank currency market on the same day. 

While the foregoing changes should, and are generally expected to, liberalise the foreign currency market in Ukraine, we note, by way of contrast, that the regulation of currency forwards is yet to be relaxed by the NBU. Currently, as a general rule, Ukrainian banks may only carry out currency forwards within their open FX position limits, and only where both currencies are major freely convertible foreign currencies (i.e., not a UAH/FX forward).


For more information please visit www.bakermckenzie.com


 

 

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