SBP’s reserves fall another $470mn, now stand at $10.85bn

Foreign exchange reserves held by the State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) fell another $470 million on a weekly basis to reach a critical $10.85 billion, revealed central bank data on Thursday. This is the lowest reserve-level since June 2020. Total liquid foreign reserves held by the country stood at $17.03 billion as of April 8, said the SBP. The development means the rollover of a major syndicated loan facility from China has not yet happened.

Meanwhile, net foreign reserves held by commercial banks stood at $6.18 billion, data showed. “During the week ended on April 8, 2022, SBP reserves decreased by $470 million to $10.85 billion, mainly due to external debt repayments,” said the SBP. Pakistan’s foreign exchange reserves have been under pressure since December last year. While the country has been looking to build its foreign currency reserves on the back of loans, remittances, and higher exports, foreign direct investment continues to be an area of concern for policymakers. On Thursday, Pakistan also reported record remittances in March, a positive sign for the South Asian economy.

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