It’s been a tough year for some of the world’s major currencies. The Turkish lira, the Russian ruble, the Chinese yuan and many others have declined steadily, with some dropping quite dramatically in August. Some have recovered slightly, but the overall trend remains the same. And now, we can add Uzbekistan to the list. The Uzbek currency, the som, has been declining since early August. On Oct. 2, it was valued at 8,179 soms to the dollar. This could mean new challenges for the country’s economy, which has been undergoing liberalization reforms since Shavkat Mirziyoyev took over as president in late 2016.
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Reforms include the liberalization of prices, the restructuring of state-owned enterprises and the empowerment of the central bank. The reform most relevant to the decline of the som, however, was the deregulation of foreign currency exchanges in September 2017. The day after the government announced the reform, the value of the currency fell by 50 pe