Myanmar's currency drops, affecting people's lives

Myanmar's currency has tumbled in value since the military coup in February, seriously impacting people's lives as prices of imported goods rise.

The country's central bank now sets a reference exchange rate of 1,921 kyat per dollar. That means Myanmar's currency has dropped more than 40 percent against the greenback since the military took power.

But the kyat's value has actually plunged further at exchange counters. The dollar was trading at around 2,700 kyat in the largest city of Yangon on Wednesday afternoon.

It is believed that a growing number of citizens prefer to have the US currency on concerns about the future. But some currency exchange offices have stopped displaying the exchange rate for the dollar.

The kyat's depreciation has caused prices of imported goods to rise. Reports say gasoline prices have doubled from before the coup, and drug prices are also on the rise.

The central bank temporarily stepped up controls in an attempt to manage exchange rates and has repeatedly intervened in the market to shore up the currency. But there is little prospect of it stopping the currency's depreciation.