Forex reserves at $17.37b

Country’s foreign exchange reserves fall for a second consecutive week to $17.37 billion.

Express March 11, 2011


The country’s foreign exchange reserves fell for a second consecutive week to $17.37 billion, revealed the State Bank of Pakistan on Thursday.

According to official data, the country’s cumulative reserves, valued in terms of dollars, have dropped $130 million since last week.

During this period, reserves held by the central bank fell by $70 million to $13.964 billion. Scheduled banks also saw their dollar holdings shrink by about $60 million to $3.41 billion.

Despite the slight slippage, total foreign currency reserves continue to hover close to the all-time high level that was recorded on February 24, when the tally reached $17.59 billion.

Analysts have highlighted that remittances sent by overseas Pakistanis have continued to post successive increases, helping shore up the country’s deposits. “Rising prices of oil have been the biggest drain on foreign currency,” commented an analyst. “However, so far the rising quantum of remittances has almost nullified the negative impact of the rising oil import bill,” he added.

Published in The Express Tribune, March 11th, 2011.


Zia Khatri | 10 years ago | Reply Government is putting all efforts to increase foreign exchange reserves. A chart is given below with monthly effect on forex reserves: Oil - Import increase (monthly) $100 - 0.5 to 0.6 billion $110 - 1.8 to 1.9 billion $120 - 3.1 to 3.2 billion $130 - 4.4 to 4.5 billion $140 - 5.7 to 5.8 billion $150 - 7.0 to 7.1 billion $160 - 8.3 to 8.4 billion $170 - 9.6 to 9.7 billion $180 - 10.9 to 11.0 billion $190 - 12.2 to 12.3 billion $200 - 13.5 to 13.6 billion Here is nothing that the government or State Bank of Pakistan can do about it. Import of oil cannot be cut off due to security reasons. However, increase in import duty can reduce the import bill but it will not stop the forex reserve wipeout. Oil reserves globally have peaked out and the supplies will continue to reduce with higher demand pushing prices higher no matter there is a crisis in Middle East, Africa, USA, Japan or Europe. Oil prices are expected to remain high and Pakistan going for IMF help is the future.
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