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SBP received 2.2 billion from China

26 March, 2019

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The State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) has received US 2.2 billion from China, according to a tweet by the central bank on Monday. “The SBP has received RMB 15 billion value, equivalent to $2.2 billion, as proceeds of the loan obtained by government of Pakistan from China,” the tweet added. With this deposit, the country’s forex exchange reserves have strengthened while the situation of balance of payment has also improved.

Following a meeting in Beijing between Chinese Premier Li Keqiang and Prime Minister Imran Khan in November 2018, China had said that it was willing to offer assistance to Pakistan to help it weather its current fiscal woes.

With this, Pakistan has so far received a total of $9.2 billion in financial assistance packages from friendly countries during the current fiscal year (2019) to date, including $4.2 billion from China, $3 billion from Saudi Arabia and $2 billion from United Arab Emirates (UAE).

The SBP reserves stood at $8.84 billion as on March 15, 2019, according to the central bank’s latest weekly report. The latest deposits came from Beijing are expected to boost the SBP reserves into double digit after a gap of almost one year.

The comparatively higher imports than exports and debt repayments did not allow the reserves to stay stable, as the government was partially financing such international payments using the reserves. This was despite Pakistan’s overseas workers sending notably higher remittances during the first eight months (July-February) of the current fiscal year.

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