ISLAMABAD-Pakistan rupee’s value has further improved on Monday following the crackdown against the foreign currency smugglers and illegal currency trade.
The local currency’s value has appreciated by Rs0.9 or 0.31 percent to Rs290.86 against US dollar on the first day of the current week. The US dollar closed at Rs291.76 on the last day (Friday) of the previous week, according to the latest details of the State Bank of Pakistan (SBP). The US dollar has depreciated to a six-week low against the rupee. In the open market, the rupee gained by 0.17 percent or 50 paisas against the greenback, with the foreign currency being traded at Rs292.50. The major reason behind improved local currency value is ongoing action against the foreign currency smugglers and illegal currency trade. Earlier, the rupee value was continuously declining since the caretaker government had assumed the charge in mid of August this year. The local currency had increased to Rs307 against the US dollar in interbank and around Rs340 in open market mainly due to the speculations and hoarding of dollars.
The improvement in local currency’s value might reduce the oil prices in the country. The caretaker government last month had massively enhanced the prices of petroleum products due to the currency depreciation and hike in prices in the international mar¬ket. Petrol prices have increased by Rs58.43 per litre to highest ever Rs331.38 and diesel prices by Rs55.78 per litre to Rs329.18 per litre in the last one month —from August 16 to September 16 this year.
Market is uncertain about the actual value of the dollar. However, Caretaker Federal Commerce, Industries, and Production Minister Gohar Ejaz in last week had claimed that the real value of the dollar in Pakistan was currently Rs260. “Today the (actual) exchange rate of Pakistani rupee against the greenback is Rs260,” Gohar Ejaz stated while talking to the business community. He urged the people holding dollars abroad to repatriate them. The interim minister, in an indication of crackdown against hoarders of the American currency, encouraged them to release their funds into the open market. This, he explained, would facilitate the legitimisation of their assets and shield them from regulatory scrutiny.