Monday, April 30, 2007

Exchange rate woes

The exchange rate between the US dollar and the Euro is at an almost all time low.  Our official field rate for this month is 1.364.  That is, 1 euro is worth $1.364.

In other words, a liter of milk in Kosovo (at least when we left) was 70 euro cents.  For simplicity sake, let's say a quart and a liter are the same thing (technically 1 quart is .946 liters).  That means a gallon of milk costs 2.80 euros.  That doesn't sound like a big deal.  Milk in our area goes for as much as $3.50.  But wait until you convert the currency.

On euro is equal to $1.36.  That means a gallon of milk in Kosovo really costs $3.82.  That's about 50 cents more a gallon than when we left last summer.

This exchange is really putting a cramp on ministry spending as well.  Everything costs more in US dollars as the dollar continues to slide against the euro.  Think about it this way.  Say that a donor gave $1000 for a ministry project in Kosovo.  That $1000 gift would only amount 735 Euro.  That's right...we lose almost twenty-five percent of all donations just because the dollar is so low against the euro.

Now, obviously God owns all the cattle, but this is beginning to really hurt from the viewpoint of this particular sheep.

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