The foreign exchange reserves held by the central bank rose by 9.76% on a week-on-week basis to $4.4 billion, according to data released by the State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) on Thursday.
On April 14, 2023, the SBP’s foreign currency reserves stood at $4,432.5 million, up by $394 million as compared to $4,038.3 million on April 7.
The central bank attributed the increase in reserves to mainly the receipt of $300 million in government of Pakistan’s commercial loan.
Overall, the liquid foreign currency reserves held by the country, including the net reserves held by banks other than the SBP, stood at $9,964.9 million. The net reserves held by banks amounted to $5,532.4 million.
Ismail Iqbal Securities Head of Research Fahad Rauf has said that any significant improvement in Pakistan’s foreign currency reserves depends on the revival of International Monetary Fund’s (IMF) loan programme and inflow of fresh financing from other multilateral and bilateral creditors.
“They (FX reserves) are projected to rise to around $7-8 billion by the end of current fiscal year on June 30, 2023,” he said. The reserves have slightly improved in recent weeks after the central bank opted to buy US dollars in the inter-bank market in the wake of increased supply of the greenback compared to its demand.
Published in The Express Tribune, April 21st, 2023.
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