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Maersk, a major freight services provider, announced on Friday that it will be temporarily suspending acceptance of C&F (Freight Prepaid) bookings with effect from August 15.

In a notification to its customers, Maersk said restrictions and limitations imposed by the State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) on outward freight remittances for foreign carriers operating in Pakistan has put it “in a very difficult situation for accepting your C&F (Freight Prepaid) shipments for a time being”.

“To maintain our services, we are compelled to temporarily suspend acceptance of your C&F (Freight Prepaid) bookings with effect from 15th August 2022 until remittances restrictions are eased/lifted by SBP,” the advisory to customers read.

However, the company said that it will continue to accept export bookings on free on board (FOB) (Freight Collect) terms as usual.

The restrictions come at a time when policymakers are looking to control the outflow of dollars as the country's foreign exchange reserves deplete to a critical level.

The reserves’ position is crucial for Pakistan which is desperately seeking dollar inflows to meet its balance-of-payments needs. A low level of reserves caused severe pressure on its currency market with the rupee witnessing its worst monthly performance in July in over 50 years.

On Thursday, the SBP said that its reserves fell another $555 million, clocking in at $7.83 billion as of August 5, 2022.

Total liquid foreign reserves held by the country stood at $13.56 billion. Net foreign reserves held by commercial banks amounted to $5.73 billion, added the central bank.

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Qaiser Aug 14, 2022 02:04pm
Time for Munshi Ishaq D"aal"ar to use his wizardry...
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