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KARACHI: The country’s total liquid foreign exchange reserves fell by $79 million during the last week due to external debt servicing.

The State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) on Thursday reported that total liquid foreign exchange reserves held by the country stood at $12.535 billion as of Nov 10, 2023 compared to $12.614 billion as of Nov 3, 2023.

During the week under the review, SBP’s reserves decreased by $115 million to $7.397 billion due to debt repayments. However, Net foreign reserves held by commercial banks rose by $36 million to $5.139 billion at the end of last week.

Pakistan’s central bank reserves see slight increase of $4mn, now stand at $7.51bn

In a major breakthrough, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) on Wednesday announced that its and Pakistani authorities have reached staff-level agreement (SLA) on the first review of nine-month Stand-By Arrangement (SBA) amounted to $3 billion.

However, as per process, the staff-level agreement is subject to approval by the IMF Executive Board. Upon approval of the Executive Board SDR 528 million equal to some $700 million loan tranche will be disbursed to Pakistan. With release of this amount overall disbursements under the IMF SBA will reach $1.9 billion.

The arrival of these inflows will also help to build the depleting foreign exchange reserves of the country.

It may be mentioned here that the IMF team, led by Nathan Porter, visited Pakistan from November 2-15, 2023, to hold discussions on the first review of Pakistan’s economic programme supported by the IMF SBA and the announcement of SLA was made on completion of economic review.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2023

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