KARACHI: The US dollar gained Rs2.64 against the Pakistan Rupee (PKR) to make new record high at Rs198.39 by end of trading at interbank foreign exchange market on Wednesday.
The exchange rate was closed at Rs198.39 to the dollar, which was the previous high of the dollar, a day earlier in interbank foreign exchange market.
Currency experts said that massive fall in foreign exchange reserves and high import payments were the major reasons behind rupee fall. Further, delay in IMF tranche of $1 billion after the government decision not to remove subsidy on fuel prices, put further pressure on the exchange rate.
Pakistan’s foreign exchange reserves fell by $177 million to $16.376 billion by the week ended May 6, 2022. The foreign exchange reserves of the country were $16.553 billion by week ended April 30, 2022.
The country’s foreign exchange reserves hit record high at $27.228 billion by the week ended August 27, 2021. Since then the foreign exchange reserves have depleted by $10.852 billion.
The official reserves of the State Bank witnessed a decline of $190 million to $10.309 billion by the week ended May 6, 2022 as compared with $10.499 billion a week ago.
The SBP reserves reached a record high at $20.145 billion by August 27, 2021. The official reserves also fell by $9.836 billion after reaching record high. The official reserves of the SBP have been reduced to provide import payment cover for only 1.56 months.
The import bill of the country surged by 46.41 per cent to $65.49 billion during the first 10 months of the current fiscal year as compared with $44.73 billion in the corresponding months of the last fiscal year.
Pakistan is a net importer of petroleum products to meet its domestic demand. The country’s oil bill was $14.81 billion during the first nine months (July – March) 2021/2022 as compared with $7.55 billion in the corresponding period of the last fiscal year, showing a massive growth of 96 per cent. The oil bill is around 25 per cent of the total import bill of the country.