Jamaicans should expect the exchange rate to remain high in the coming months, as the country seeks to recover from COVID-19.

That’s according to economist, Dr. Damien King.

Dr. King and banker, Dr. Adrian Stokes, were speaking on Nationwide This Morning.

The Jamaican dollar has lost 9 per cent in value since the first local case of COVID-19 case was recorded in March.

But, according to Drs. King and Stokes, this depreciation is actually helping to protect the economy.

An exchange rate approaching 150 to 1 US is frightening to many Jamaicans.

It means imported goods, including some food items, are going to be more expensive.

But, Head of Insurance and Wealth Management at Scotia Group Jamaica, Dr. Adrian Stokes, says the recent depreciation actually helps to protect the economy.

[Cart No: <Carts>Adrian Stokes depreciation helps MAY 21,2020.mp3Time: 25sOut-cue: ]

According to Dr. Stokes, the fall in the dollar acts as a shock absorber.

[Cart No: <Carts>Adrian Stokes shock absorber MAY 21,2020.mp3Time: 27sOut-cue: ]

Economist, Dr. Damien King, explains that making US dollars more expensive compels Jamaicans to postpone unnecessary purchases that require US dollars.

[Cart No: <Carts>Damien King postpone imports MAY 21,2020.mp3Time: 13sOut-cue: ]

Dr. King says Jamaicans may have to accept that the exchange rate will remain high for some time, until tourism – a major source of US dollars for the country – rebounds.

[Cart No: <Carts>Damien King long term fx rate MAY 21,2020.mp3Time: 25sOut-cue: ]