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The Sana’a Center Economic Unit's latest contributions

Challenges and Prospects for Electronic Money and Payment Systems in Yemen

March 7, 2022
Yemen has a heavily cash-based economy with low levels of financial inclusion. The country’s formal banking sector is highly underdeveloped, undercapitalized and concentrated in urban areas, leaving it inaccessible for the majority of the Yemeni population. Just prior to the current conflict, the Central Bank of Yemen (CBY) began reforms aimed at…

Yemen Economic Bulletin: The Limited Efficacy of US Sanctions on Houthi Financial Networks

December 17, 2021
Since 2015, conflict-related factors in Yemen and de-risking by financial institutions abroad have led to a mass migration of financial flows from the country’s formal to the informal economy. Informal market actors have benefited greatly from this increased liquidity, foremost among them Swaid & Sons for Exchange Co., which became one of Yem…

Using IMF Support to Mitigate Currency Collapse

October 22, 2021
The value of the Yemeni rial (YR) has been collapsing dramatically since the end of August in areas nominally controlled by the internationally recognized Yemeni government. This has spurred a rapid deterioration in the living conditions of millions of people and widespread social unrest.  The International Monetary Fund (IMF) also recently allo…

The CBY-Aden’s Crisis of Confidence – Assessing the UN Panel of Experts’ Corruption Allegations

March 26, 2021
The United Nations Panel of Experts on Yemen recently accused the internationally recognized Yemeni government, its central bank and commercial food importers in the country of colluding to embezzle nearly half a billion dollars. The accusations were included in the panel’s annual report to the UN Security Council, published on January 25, which …

Yemen Economic Bulletin: November Updates

December 9, 2020
Following an escalation in recent months, there was some progress by the end of November in mediating a solution to end the struggle between the two fragmented branches of the Central Bank of Yemen (CBY) over access to financial data from the country's commercial and Islamic banks and money exchange outlets (for details, see: Yemen Economic Bulle…