ISLAMABAD - Pakistan’s foreign exchange reserves had tumbled by around $230 million in last week despite it received one billion dollar from Saudi Arabia recently. 

Pakistan had received one billion dollar from Saudi Arabia last week, which took the State Bank of Pakistan (SBP)’s reserves to $8.29 billion. However, the reserves had tumbled by around $230 million in last one week. During the week ending 23 November 2018, the SBP’s reserves decreased to US$8.062 billion.

Saudi Arabia on October 23 had pledged to provide $6 billion to Pakistan on an annual basis in the shape of cash assistance and oil on deferred payments for one year. Saudi Arabia would place $3 billion cash deposits in the account of State Bank of Pakistan. In addition, it would also provide a one-year deferred payment facility for the import of oil, worth up to $3 billion. Pakistan had received one billion dollar out of three billion dollars recently while remaining would be received in next few weeks.

The reserves are continuously tumbling from last couple of years due to heavy repayment against previous loans and financing of current account deficit. On the other hand, the inflow of foreign loans remained slow during first four months (July-October) of the ongoing fiscal year, as the country received only $1.58 billion from bilateral and multilateral sources. Pakistan had received $2.5 billion during corresponding period of the previous year.

Pakistan had estimated to receive $10 billion as foreign assistance from bilateral and multilateral sources during ongoing financial year. However, the country had received only 15.8 percent of the annual estimates during first four months of the year 2018-19. “The inflow of foreign assistance remained slow during so far due to political transition in the country,” said an official of the ministry of finance. He further said that government would sign donor-funded projects in the weeks to come, which would increase the volume of loans.

According to the data of Economic Affairs Division, the country had borrowed $399.5 million from commercial banks in July-October of the current financial year. The previous government had budgeted estimates of $2 billion from foreign commercial banks for 2018-19. Asian Development Bank (ADB) disbursed $139.4 million in first four months of the ongoing fiscal year against the budgeted estimates of $1.38 billion. Pakistan received 528.14 million from China in the current fiscal year against the budgeted estimate of $840.99 million.  USA disbursed $28.5 million, International Development Association (IDA) $69.21 million, IDB (S-Term) $272.46 million, UK 51.14 million, France $31.16 million, Japan $17.45 million and Germany $4.51 million in the current fiscal year so far.