Pakistan stocks and bonds tried to shake off the third rupee devaluation since December as it touched 120/dollar for a 15% drop over the period. Foreign reserves are down to $10 billion or two months’ imports on a 5% of gross domestic product current account deficit, swelled by equipment imports under China’s Economic Corridor energy and infrastructure projects and sliding remittances. The interim government recently borrowed more through Chinese banks and the bilateral central bank swap line to bolster the position and repay foreign debt, as the business and financial communities brace for possible reapplication of an International Monetary Fund program after July elections. Caretaker Finance Minister Dr Shamshad Akhtar urged “immediate corrective measures” to restore debt and balance of payments sustainability, as Moody’s kept the low “B” sovereign rating on both credit and political risks. The PML-N party in power under Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif had basked in the glow of IMF exit and easy global bond access before his ouster on corruption charges, but his successor faces immediate cash and economic policy credibility crises that will leave foreign investors, already net equity sellers, on edge. The dailyReport Must-reads from across Asia – directly to your inbox Massive government… Read full this story
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