SOFAZ to transfer $4 billion to Azerbaijani Central Bank

Azerbaijan will transfer as much as 7.5 billion manat ($4 billion) of assets from its sovereign wealth fund to the central bank this year, giving it ammunition to defend the manat in the latest effort to break the grip of a currency crisis.

The regulator will use the money to “ensure macroeconomic stability” in 2017, according to a decree signed by the Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev and published on Tuesday. Under the plan, the assets of the State Oil Fund known as SOFAZ will decline for a second consecutive year after shrinking by 4% in 2016, Bloomberg reports.

SOFAZ will transfer an additional 6.1 billion manat to the national budget this year and allocate 496 million manat to fund projects to pipe natural gas to Europe, according to the presidential decree.

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