The Pakistani rupee closed unchanged against the US dollar in the open market after appreciating earlier in the day when it became stronger in value than the inter-bank market where it was hovering at the 299-300 level on Tuesday.
Currency dealers Business Recorder reached out to said the rupee was being quoted at 299 for selling and 296 for buying purposes for customers in the open market, down from Monday’s levels.
At close of trading, however, it ended at 300 and 297 for selling and buying purposes, respectively, according to data provided by the Exchange Companies Association of Pakistan (ECAP).
The rates are now more or less equal to the rupee’s value in the inter-bank market, a rare occurrence for the local currency that has seen a volatile ride in the past few weeks. In the inter-bank market, the rupee settled at 299.89 against the US dollar.
Being under a programme with the International Monetary Fund (IMF), the exchange rate gap between the inter-bank and open markets – called the premium by the IMF in its country report on Pakistan published after the SBA’s approval by the Executive Board – needs to be a maximum of 1.25%.
However, the premium is almost negligible with the open market rates more or less in line with the inter-bank market.
The rupee regained momentum after authorities reportedly cracked down on smuggling of dollars.
The measures initiated after the Pakistan Army’s top brass last week expressed its resolve to assist the caretaker government in curbing all illegal activities which hamper economic stability and growth.
On Monday, President Dr Arif Alvi gave his assent to “the Price Control and Prevention of Profiteering and Hoarding (Amendment) Bill, 2023.”
The purpose of the amendment bill is to amend the Price Control and Prevention of Profiteering and Hoarding Act, 1977.
The government bill was passed by the National Assembly on August 7, 2023, while the Senate passed it on August 9, 2023.