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AKIPRESS.COM - In the two years that the central bank has offered bars directly to the population, about 140 kilograms of bullion have been sold, Chairman of the National Bank of Kyrgyzstan Tolkunbek Abdygulov said by phone to Bloomberg.
Abdygulov says his “dream” is for every one of the 6 million citizens to own at least 100 grams (3.5 ounces) of the precious metal, Kyrgyzstan's biggest export. “Gold can be stored for a long time and, despite the price fluctuations on international markets, it doesn’t lose its value for the population as a means of savings,” he said in an interview. “I’ll try to turn the dream into reality faster.”
“We are hopeful that our country’s population will learn to diversify its savings into assets that are more liquid and -- more importantly -- capable of retaining their value,” he said. In rural areas, cattle is still the asset of choice for investors and savers, according to Abdygulov.
The central bank produces bars of different sizes, varying in weight from 1 to 100 grams.
The central bank governor believes his plan is realistic, even though it means the population would own about 600 tons of gold, equivalent to 30 times the nation’s current annual output. Abdygulov declined to specify the timeframe for when his goal of 100 grams per person can be met, Bloomberg reported.