Ukraine Central Bank Limits Cash Withdrawals Amid Russian Assault

On Thursday, as people waited in line at banks and ATMs to withdraw cash, the National Bank of Ukraine adopted a resolution that limited daily cash withdrawals in local currency up to 100,000 hryvnia. $3,350, except for wages or social payments. The regulator also prohibited cash from foreign currency accounts.

After President Putin announced a special military operation in Ukraine in the early hours of February 24, Russia made this decision. Many Ukrainians fled major cities like Kyiv after rockets exploded on targets throughout the country. There were also reports that Russian tanks crossed the border. This was all part of what has become a large-scale Russian invasion.

Ocheredi k bankomatam v Kieve

– Uchenik Shtirlitsa, @moments_Spring February 24, 2022

The NBU demanded that banks continue to be open despite the imposition of martial law by President Volodymyr Zelesky. The restrictions also prohibit foreign exchange transactions, with the exception of customers selling foreign currency. The official exchange rates for the hryvnia were fixed, according to the authority, at 29.25 hryvnias per $1 and 33.17 euros per EUR1, respectively.

The central bank has placed a moratorium on cross border foreign currency payments. It also prohibited Ukrainian banks to process debit transactions on accounts of Russian Federation residents. This ban includes electronic money distribution and deposit to e-wallets.

This document does not mention other digital assets, such as cryptocurrencies. Ukraine has been trying to regulate them. The parliament of East European nation, which is ranked among the region’s leaders when it comes to crypto adoption, recently approved the law ‘On Virtual Assets,’ which lists NBU as the primary regulator of the market. The legislation has yet to be entered into force.

The National Bank of Ukraine stated that these restrictions do not apply to transactions made to or by the Ukrainian government, enterprises, or institutions involved in mobilization tasks, as well as payments under special permits issued the monetary authority. The NBU stressed that all cashless payments are unlimited. ATMs must always be stocked with cash, and banks should ensure uninterrupted operation of their branches.