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Thursday Aug 04 2022
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SBP-held foreign exchange reserves decline by $190m

A money changer counts U.S. dollar banknotes at a currency exchange office in Ankara, Turkey November 11, 2021. — Reuters/File
A money changer counts U.S. dollar banknotes at a currency exchange office in Ankara, Turkey November 11, 2021. — Reuters/File

  • SBP says decrease comes due to external debt payments.
  • Net reserves held by banks stand at $5,823.3 million.
  • Pakistan has an import cover of less than 1.5 months.


KARACHI: The country’s foreign exchange reserves held by the State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) continued to decline on a weekly basis.

On July 29, the foreign currency reserves held by the SBP were recorded at $8,385.4 million, down $190 million compared with $8,575.16 on July 22, data released by the State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) on Thursday showed.

According to the central bank, the decrease came due to external debt and other payments.

Overall liquid foreign currency reserves held by the country, including net reserves held by banks other than the SBP, stood at $14,208.7 million.

Net reserves held by banks amounted to $5,823.3 million.

It should be noted that with the current foreign exchange reserves position, Pakistan has an import cover of less than 1.5 month.

However, China has rolled over a $2 billion loan in State Administration Foreign Exchange (SAFE) deposit for a year for cash-strapped Pakistan’s economy.

Reserves likely to improve

“China has rolled over three SAFE deposits. The first deposit of $500 million was due on June 27, 2022, the second $500 million matured on June 29, 2022, and the third $1 billion were due on July 23, 2022. China’s SAFE deposits of $2 billion have been rolled over for one year,” a top official of the Finance Division told The News.

So far in totality, China has rolled over a $4.3 billion loan, including $2.3 billion in commercial loans and now $2 billion in SAFE deposits, making it possible for Islamabad for bridging the external financing gap with a whopping amount of $35.9 billion for the current fiscal year.

Meanwhile, Pakistan is expected to receive funds worth $1.17 billion from the International Monetary Fund (IMF) by the end of this month as the Washington-based lender confirmed that Pakistan has completed all its prior actions ahead of the Executive Board meeting scheduled on August 28.