The Pakistani rupee remained unchanged against the US dollar in the open market on Tuesday, while the local currency saw marginal improvement in the inter-bank market.
During the day, currency dealers Business Recorder reached out to said the rupee was being quoted at 287 for selling and 284 for buying purposes for customers, unchanged from Monday’s close.
At the end of trading on Tuesday, the currency closed at the same rates, according to data provided by the Exchange Companies Association of Pakistan (ECAP).
In the inter-bank market, the rupee registered a slight gain against the US dollar as it appreciated 0.04%. As per the State Bank of Pakistan, the local unit settled at 285.52, an increase of Re0.12.
The gap between rates in the inter-bank and open markets is required to be less than 1.25% under one of the structural benchmarks set by the International Monetary Fund (IMF).
Pakistan is operating under a caretaker government after a $3-billion IMF loan programme was approved in July to avert a sovereign debt default.
Earlier this month, the IMF staff and Pakistani authorities reached a staff-level agreement on the first review of the IMF Stand-By Arrangement (SBA) program. The government expects approval from the IMF’s executive board in December.
The funding from the Washington-based lender is critical for the cash-strapped South Asian economy, which struggles with foreign exchange reserves.
In a related development, Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) leader and Senator Ishaq Dar on Monday called on stakeholders to come on board to resolve the exchange rate issue as he emphasised that Pakistan’s currency is still undervalued.
Speaking to the Senate session, the former finance minister – widely seen as an advocate of a strong rupee – reiterated that devaluation is the “mother of all evils” while supporting the recent strict measures by the interim government.
“Around 91% of the economy is destroyed due to rupee devaluation,” he said, reiterating his firm stance that Pakistan’s rupee is stronger than its value.