ISLAMABAD: Finance Minister on Tuesday said that the State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) is independent in taking decisions regarding exchange.
“The exchange rate decision has taken by SBP and it will continue to take the decision independently,” he said at the inaugural session of the 5-day 11th South Asia Economic Summit here, organized by Sustainable Development Policy Institute (SDPI).
The finance minister said that the SBP was an autonomous institution and the government. He said that the government had no plan to change its policy with respect to independence of SBP.
He said before the fresh wave of volatility in exchange rate, the SBP governor had informed him that the KIBOR and inter-bank rate of dollar against rupee was increasing, therefore the central bank would have to take decision of devaluing its currency.
“Although I knew that it will happen but I did not know when it will happen and how much the value of rupee will be devalued,” he said.
The finance minister said by the start of current year the value of rupee against a dollar was Rs105 while by time when the interim government handed over to the newly elected government in August this year, the value plunged to Rs128 and now after lapse of further 4 months the value has further decreased by Rs10.
He said there was not any economic crisis in the country and the financial gap of the year 2018-2019 had also been closed.
He criticized the elements who were creating misconceptions and chaos with regard to the country’s economy not to spread such rumors, as it would not do any service to the country.
The country’s economic situation is far better now as compared to what it was about 4 to 5 months ago as exports started to increase, imports are decreasing, remittances are increasing and with the result current account deficit was also shrinking, he said.
The current account deficit has been decreased to $1 billion per month from $2 billion a few months ago, he added.
With regard to regional connectivity, the minister hoped that the cooperation of South Asian Association of Regional Cooperation (SAARC) would strengthen in future despite the lucrative response from the Indian side.