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Syria became the second Middle Eastern nation in two weeks, after Kuwait, to dump its currency's peg to the U.S. dollar to curb rising import costs and inflation. The country will link the Syrian pound to International Monetary Fund special drawing rights instead from mid-July, central bank Governor Adib Mayaleh said. The value of the drawing rights is determined against a basket of currencies including the dollar, euro, yen and U.K. pound. Syria is broadening its peg after the country's currency was dragged lower against the euro by a 10-per-cent slide in the dollar last year, pushing up the cost of imports from Europe.

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