Pakistan key policy rate unchanged at 15 per cent

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Picture used for illustrative purpose only.

Pakistan’s central bank on Monday kept its key policy rate unchanged at 15 per cent at a scheduled meeting of its monetary policy committee, the bank said in a statement.

Pakistan has been facing an economic meltdown with a balance of payment crisis and foreign reserves falling to barely one month’s worth of imports, a situation which has been worsened by devastating floods.

The State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) had kept settings unchanged at its previous meeting in August.

“Based on currently available information, the MPC was of the view that the existing monetary policy stance strikes an appropriate balance between managing inflation and maintaining growth in the wake of the floods,” the bank said.

This was the State Bank of Pakistan’s (SBP) first policy decision since devastating floods in late August killed more than 1,700 and caused about $30 billion in damage.

GDP growth could fall to around 2 per cent in financial year 2023 compared to previous forecast of 3-4 per cent before the floods, the central bank statement said.

Moody’s downgraded Pakistan credit rating to Caa1 from B3 last week.

Meanwhile Pakistan will not seek debt restructuring from Paris Club creditor nations, the country’s finance minister Ishaq Dar said on Sunday as he sought to restore market confidence after a credit rating downgrade.

The new rating from Moody’s raised concerns that Pakistan could default on its foreign debt as it contends with economic turmoil and a balance of payments crisis.

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