Burundi President Pierre Nkurunziza claps after signing the new constitution at the Presidential Palace in Gitega Province. File picture: Evrard Ngendakumana/Reuters

Burundi's Ministry of Public Security says authorities are cracking down on the foreign currency black market with more than 40 people arrested in the country.

A ministry spokesman said that those who had been arrested were accused of “breaching the central bank regulation on foreign exchange”, the East African reported.

Following the freezing of foreign aid in 2016 - after President Pierre Nkurunziza ran for a third term despite protests from his political opponents who asserted he was violating terms of a deal that ended the civil war – Burundi has suffered from foreign currency shortages.In October, the Central Bank asserted that official reserves in the first quarter of the year covered only three weeks of imports.

Burundi authorities cracks down on the foreign currency black market with more than 40 arrests made. Video: Zodidi Dano/African News Agency

In October the Central Bank asserted that official reserves in the first quarter of the year covered only three weeks of imports, and has not answered requests for more recent information.