KARACHI  - Pakistan’s foreign exchange reserves eased marginally to $16.90 billion in the week ending Jan. 6, from $16.92 billion the previous week, the State Bank said on Thursday.
Reserves held by the State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) fell to $12.82 billion from $12.88 billion a week earlier, while those held by commercial banks rose to $4.08 billion, compared with $4.04 billion the previous week.
Foreign exchange reserves hit a record $18.31b in the week ending July 30, but have since eased due to debt repayments.
Reserves were boosted in June last year by inflows of $411 million, including a $191.9 million loan from the World Bank, and a $196.8 million loan from the Asian Development Bank.
Higher export proceeds and a record inflow of remittances have also helped support Pakistan’s foreign exchange reserves.
According to official data, remittances rose 19.6 percent to $6.33 billion in the first half of the fiscal year (July-June), compared with $5.29 billion in the same period a year earlier.
Islamabad has to start repaying an $8 billion International Monetary Fund loan in early 2012. Without additional sources of revenue, that will put further pressure on Pakistan’s foreign exchange reserves.