SBP reserves fall from $241m to $17.09bn

CARACHI:

Foreign reserves held by the central bank fell 1.4 percent on a weekly basis, according to data released by the State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) on Thursday.

On February 11, foreign exchange reserves held by the SBP were recorded at $17,095.8 million, down $241 million from $17,336.8 million on February 4.

The central bank gave no reason for the decline in reserves.

The overall liquid foreign exchange reserves held by the country, including net reserves held by banks other than SBP, amounted to $23,490.2 million. Net reserves held by banks amounted to $6,394.4 million.

Earlier in the week ended August 27, 2021, foreign exchange reserves held by the central bank hit a record high of $20.15 billion after Pakistan received a general allocation of Special Drawing Rights (SDRs) from worth $2,751.8 million from the IMF on August 24.

On March 30, 2021, Pakistan borrowed $2.5 billion through Eurobonds by offering lucrative interest rates to lenders aiming to build up foreign exchange reserves.

It received the first loan tranche of $991.4 million from the IMF on July 9, 2019, which helped bolster reserves. At the end of December 2019, the IMF released the second loan tranche of approximately $454 million.

Reserves also jumped due to $2.5 billion in inflows from China. In 2020, the SBP succeeded in repaying the external debt of more than one billion dollars when the Sukuk matured.

In December 2019, foreign exchange reserves exceeded the $10 billion mark thanks to contributions from multilateral lenders, including $1.3 billion from the Asian Development Bank (ADB).