Pak agrees to depreciate rupee post talks with IMF

Islamabad: Pakistan has agreed to allow the depreciation of rupee post talks with the International Monetary Fund (IMF) on the nation’s economy.

Pakistan and an IMF delegation concluded the first round of discussions on the country’s economy. Now members of the IMF delegation and Pakistan team are taking a two-day break to prepare for the policy-level wrap-up by December 13-14, reported the Dawn.

The State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) would now let the currency exchange rate to adjust to market conditions after many months, rather years, of resisting expectations, the newspaper reported, citing the senior officials as saying.

The authorities believed the currency adjustment would help shift foreign currency holdings from commercial banks currently standing at a higher level of around USD 6 billion back to official reserves, said the Dawn.

The timing of the move was planned for Friday to ensure materialisation of USD 2.5 billion worth of receipts from two international bonds launched last month.

This calculated move allowed the currency rate to touch Rs 110 to a dollar on Friday before settling down at around Rs 107 and did not go beyond official estimates.

While the government team, led by secretary of finance Shahid Mehmood will review the assessment, the IMF mission to Pakistan, led by Harald Finger, will visit Lahore next week for talks with provincial authorities.

Pakistan will continue to remain under the IMF’s post-programme monitoring (PPM) until about 2023 for borrowing significantly higher than its quota. (ANI)