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Friday, December 01, 2023  
16 Jumada Al-Awwal 1445  

Pakistan’s battered bonds rally again on fresh IMF hopes

Pakistan had unlocked $700m of its current IMF SBA

Pakistan’s dollar-denominated government bonds rallied as much as 3 cents, or roughly 4%, on Friday as they continued to benefit from signs of ongoing International Monetary Fund support.

Caretaker Finance Minister Shamshad Akhtar told reporters on Thursday that the country would have to remain in IMF programmes when its current $3 billion standby arrangement (SBA) expires in March next year.

Speaking a day after Pakistan had unlocked $700 million of its current IMF SBA, she also reiterated Pakistan’s commitment to adhere to the fund’s reforms programme to ensure the country remained on a narrow path towards stability.

Akhtar had said that Pakistan has deferred its decision to issue $1.5 billion worth of international bonds until the signing of the agreement with the IMF as it would improve the country’s ratings.

The staff-level agreement had a positive impact on the stock market and rupee. The KSE-100 index closed at 57,397.02 points on Wednesday, up 716.96 from the previous close of 56,680. The rupee rose by 0.26% against the dollar in the interbank market. The national currency closed at Rs287.38.

According to Akhtar, it was expected that Pakistan would get $2 billion worth of funds from the World Bank while around $1 billion of inflow was expected from the Asian Development Bank, Islamic Development Bank, and Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank.

“Pakistan’s economy has improved and more work was needed for further improvement,” she said and added that it was necessary for the country to remain in the IMF programme.

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Shamshad Akhtar

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