Autonomous Administration announces laws for “cross-border” money transfer

Commercial shops in the central market of Qamishli city - August 8, 2023 (Enab Baladi/Rita Ahmed)

Commercial shops in the central market of Qamishli city - August 8, 2023 (Enab Baladi/Rita Ahmed)


The Central Cash and Payment Office, affiliated with the Anti-Money Laundering Directorate in the Autonomous Administration of North and East Syria (AANES), announced what it called “the executive instructions for cross-border money transfer” in its areas. These instructions include cash money in the form of banknotes and coins in the local currency or any other currency.

According to what was published by AANES through its official channels on December 11, the instructions include commercial bonds and various means of payment of transferable financial instruments for trading unless the source and purpose are known.

These also include precious metals used in commercial operations exclusively, gemstones, and gold, according to the instructions approved on the 6th of this month.

According to AANES, the purpose of the new instructions is to “achieve effective levels to maintain the financial system and monetary stability of the local process.”

The instructions noted that it is the responsibility of the Customs Administration affiliated with AANES to ensure the completion of the “disclosure form,” which should include the traveler’s name and personal information, passport data, place of residence inside and outside its controlled areas (if any), the reason for coming to the region (if not a resident), a statement, value, description, and type of transferable money carried.

It added that customs directorates are responsible for providing “disclosure forms” for travelers coming to and leaving the Autonomous Administration-controlled areas in northeastern Syria.

Controls for “cross-border” money transfer

In the case of traveling to AANES-controlled areas (the political umbrella of the Syrian Democratic Forces, SDF) across the border (Iraqi Kurdistan), each traveler carrying tradable money exceeding $5000 or its equivalent is required to declare it by filling out the “disclosure form.”

In the case of leaving northeastern Syria, each traveler leaving with the same amount of money must adhere to the same procedures.

If the money carried by the departing traveler exceeds $25000, they must obtain prior approval from the Central Cash and Payment Office after presenting all the documents justifying the source, purpose, and beneficiary of the money transfer and obtaining approval from the customs administration elements.

Money is confiscated if the required documents are not presented for a period not exceeding 45 days until approval is obtained from the Central Cash and Payment Office. If the owner exceeds the 45-day period, the money is transferred to the same office upon obtaining the necessary papers.

What about inside Syria?

The executive instructions issued by AANES contained a clause that includes conditions for money transfers within the Syrian geography between different control areas. It prohibited the transfer of money in US dollars or any other foreign currency.

Travelers coming from what the Autonomous Administration calls “Syrian territories” are subject to the same procedures applied to those coming from outside Syria to AANES-controlled areas when entering any foreign currency.

The Administration stipulated that those leaving its controlled areas towards areas controlled by another party in Syria must transfer money exclusively in Syrian pounds up to a limit not exceeding 25 million pounds only.

If the transferred money exceeds the announced limit, the traveler must fill out a “cross-border money transfer clearance at border crossings.” And if it exceeds 100 million pounds, the traveler will need prior approval from the Central Cash and Payment Office.

Individuals of the same traveling family to and from AANES-controlled areas are treated as individuals, according to the instructions.


النسخة العربية من المقال

Propaganda distorts the truth and prolongs the war..

Syria needs free media.. We need your support to stay independent..

Support Enab Baladi..

$1 a month makes a difference..

Click here to support