Foreign spending limits for Ukrainian volunteers canceled by central bank

6 August, 04:44 PM
The National Bank has lifted restrictions on volunteer individuals buying military goods (Photo:NBU / Facebook)

The National Bank has lifted restrictions on volunteer individuals buying military goods (Photo:NBU / Facebook)

The National Bank of Ukraine (NBU) has allowed banks to not apply spending limits on military goods purchases from foreign companies made by individuals and volunteers using hryvnia cards, the NBU press service announced on Aug. 6.

Spending limits for accounts denominated in hryvnias were first introduced on July 21, limiting accountholders to a spending cap of UAH 100,000 per month.

Now, the NBU says that spending limits will not apply if all 4 of the the following requirements are met:

  • The account transactions are typical for this individual, and the volume of account transactions exceeded the equivalent of 100,000 UAH per month before the limit was introduced;
  • the volunteer submits a letter to the bank from a state body or military unit about their cooperation with the volunteer and ordering goods for the corresponding purpose, if the amount of such an operation exceeds the equivalent of UAH 400,000 per month;
  • providing the estimated cost of the goods and the timing of the order;
  • informing the bank about fundraising in order to pay for products.

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According to this resolution, the list of goods that individual volunteers can buy without spending limits includes walkie-talkies, bulletproof vests, helmets, military and tactical uniforms, military and tactical footwear, protective clothing, optical surveillance devices, unmanned aerial vehicles, sleeping bags, mats, and medical supplies.

To prevent abuse of this decision, the bank may refuse to conduct transactions with a volume of more than UAH 100,000 if it has information from open sources regarding a volunteer’s unscrupulous activities.

In addition, the central bank has simplified currency restrictions, taking into account the needs of business. Thus, banks can sell foreign currency to legal entities and individual entrepreneurs by crediting it to the current account of the client for further use for expenses using corporate payment cards abroad.

The NBU restated that payments with foreign currency cards can be made without restriction.

Restrictions on making payments abroad within the UAH 100,000 limit per month will also not apply to the NBU’s clients – meaning, primarily, logistics and shipping companies operating abroad.

The NBU has previously claimed that they had not imposed restrictions on volunteers, who serve a vital role in organizing mutual aid for Ukrainian defenders, which often need equipment faster than official bureaucratic processes can deliver.

According to NBU chief Kyrylo Shevchenko, the National Bank allowed individuals to transfer foreign currency abroad to purchase from a set list of goods within a monthly limit of UAH 400,000 in early April.

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