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Bosnia: Agreement Reached On Single Currency Bank

Washington, 16 April 1997 (RFE/RL/) - State Department spokesman Nicholas Burns says agreement has been reached to establish a single currency for all transactions in Bosnia-Herzegovina.

Burns said yesterday that the agreement came yesterday at a special meeting in Sarajevo attended by the three members of Bosnia's collective presidency and U.S. Assistant Secretary of State for European and Canadian affairs John Kornblum and special envoy Robert Gelbard.

Burns said the three presidents agreed with the U.S. on arrangements for establishing a single currency bank as provided for in the Dayton accords. He said the bank will operate as a currency board, establishing a single currency in Bosnia-Herzegovina.

Spokesman Burns said the currency will be called "the convertible marka" and will be linked at one-to-one basis to the German mark, fully backed by foreign currency.

Burns called it a "very important development." He said the convertible markas will have distinct design elements, with a note that they are issued by the central bank of Bosnia-Herzegovina.