July 09 -
Gross reserves rise to $3 billion
The State Bank Governor Dr Ishrat Husain said on
Thursday that gross liquid foreign exchange reserves of Pakistan had
risen to $3 billion.
Speaking as chief guest at a meeting of The English
Speaking Union of Pakistan he said the total reserves included $1.6
billion held by the central bank and $1.4 billion held by all other
He made it clear that the $1.6 billion reserves of
SBP were net of cash reserves on foreign currency deposits of the
Under the terms of the $596 million IMF standby
credit programme SBP was required to enhance its liquid reserves up to
$1.6 billion by the end of June this year.
The governor said that with the increase in foreign
exchange reserves the rupee might become stable adding that a higher
level of reserves would act as a deterrent against speculation. He
also said that Pakistan would get the third tranche of the $596
million IMF standby credit next week but did not disclose its size.
Pakistan has already got two tranches worth $192
million and $132 million out of the $596 million standby credit that
the IMF approved for Pakistan at the end of November 2000. The third
tranche is being released on the basis of the performance of Pakistan
economy between January-March 2001.
The governor said that during the outgoing fiscal
year Pakistan had secured $596 million from the IMF; $350 million from
the World Bank and $333 million from the Asian Development Bank.
Answering a question he said the rupee had
depreciated sharply (by 18.5 per cent) in fiscal 2000-01 partly
because it had been kept overvalued in fiscal 1999-00 as the State
Bank had placed a cap on the inter-bank exchange rates. The governor
explained that the reason why the rupee depreciation had not raised
overall exports accordingly for the simple reason that textile exports
that constitute 66 per cent of the total exports remained subject to
quota restrictions. He said non-textile exports, however, rose by 24
per cent, which was a proof that the rupee depreciation had benefited
State Bank mops up Rs4.5bn
The State Bank of Pakistan on Thursday mopped up
Rs4.50 billion from a fairly liquid inter-bank money market in
one-week and four-week repo of treasury bills at 11 and 11.50 per
Senior bankers said the SBP sucked in Rs1.7 billion
through one- week repo and Rs2.8 billion through two-week repo of the
bills at its open market operation.
They said the State Bank's open market operation (OMO)
had generated total bids worth Rs9.95 billion — Rs3.35 billion for
one-week repo and Rs6.60 billion for four-week repo. But the State
Bank accepted bids worth Rs4.5 billion and scrapped the remainder.
Bankers said even after the OMO the market was
highly liquid with overnight call rates as low as 1-3 per cent.
Pakistan needs $6bn aid, says WB report
The World Bank's (WB) report Country Assistance
Strategy (CAS) 2002-2004 which will set priorities and help determine
level and type of funding to Pakistan, will be submitted to the bank's
board for approval by December this year or Jan 2002, WB sources said.
The WB officials, visiting the country recently,
have indicated that Islamabad needs a financial package of some $6
billion. The amount is estimated for three years that may have to be
cobbled jointly by International Monetary Fund, World Bank and the
Asian Development Bank.
NIT declares dividend
The Board of Directors of National Investment Trust
(NIT) has announced another dividend of 65 paisa per unit for
distribution to its unit holders for the year ending June 30 this
A press release on Thursday said the net value of
NIT funds has grown by 20 per cent from Rs14.3 billion in July 1999 to
Rs17.2 billion by end June this year.
UBL loan stuck up
Out of the total over Rs1.5 billion stuck-up loan
portfolio of UBL in the NWFP, a major chunk of over Rs400 million is
collectively recoverable from the Gadoon Amazai industrial estate,
SBP asks banks to float bonds
The State Bank has advised commercial banks to
float ten-year bonds to mobilize funds for housing loans to match
assets with liabilities, sources said.
Official policies are being so designed as to
develop the bond market as a source for alternative project financing
which has suffered because development financial institutions (DFI) do
not have the funds and commercial banks are shy of undertaking risks
of long-term financing. Banks also prefer to raise short-term deposits
that cannot sustain long-term financing.
Sindh gets Rs5.9 billion
The Sindh government received a sum of Rs5.9
billion on Monday from Islamabad with a promise of more funds to flow
in the next few days.
This inflow of funds from Islamabad is part of the
last instalment of Sindh's share in the federal tax pool and transfers
accruing from the collection of excise and development surcharge on
oil and gas within the province.
China to extend loan
China has agreed to extend loan on soft-term for
phase-I of Gwadar deepsea port, estimated to cost around $250 million.
Official sources told that a team of experts, led
by the Chinese communications minister, evaluated a number of projects
but selected Gwadar deepsea port.
BoP rated A, A1
The Pakistan Credit Rating Agency (PACRA) has
assigned long-term rating of "A" (single A) and short-term
rating "A1" (A one) to the Bank of Punjab.
Banks to get 2.86pc return
The State Bank said on Saturday it would pay banks
and non-bank financial institutions 2.86 per cent return in July on
the 20 per cent special cash reserves on their foreign currency
deposits. The return fixed for June was 3.06 per cent.
Citibank earns profit
Citibank has earned a record Rs1 billion operating
profit in Pakistan during 2000, according to bank's Annual Report
released on Saturday. In 1999 the bank had earned Rs500 million