RDA inflows reach $4.606bn till June

Our Correspondent
Wednesday, Jul 06, 2022

KARACHI: Pakistan received $4.606 billion through the Roshan Digital Account (RDA) during September 2020 to June 2022 period, data from the State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) showed on Tuesday.

Inflows fetched under RDA had reached $4.4 billion by the end of April 2022.

In June, the foreign exchange inflows surged 32.27 percent to stand at $250 million.

Non-resident Pakistanis (NRPs) opened 429,364 accounts from 175 countries. These accounts stood at 416,837 at the end of May. In June alone, RDA accounts were recorded at 12,527.

Analysts hailed a continued growth in RDA inflows, and called it a positive development for the country, which was still struggling to revive the International Monetary Fund (IMF) bailout programme.

Fahad Rauf, head of research at Ismail Iqbal Securities, said RDA continues to surprise with $250 million added during June. “Net number is still not released by the SBP, but even on the gross level it is a big deal, especially in the current macro environment,” Rauf said in a note.

Around $800 million have been repatriated by RDA holders in 22 months since start of RDA in September 2020 to meet their personal needs in their countries of residence. As a result, net inflows amount to over $3.8 billion, the State Bank of Pakistan said in a Tweet.

SBP’s data also showed that from September 2020 to the end of June 2022, the total investment made via Naya Pakistan Certificates (NPCs) amounted to $2.987 billion, with $1.591 billion invested in the conventional NPCs and $1.396 billion in Islamic certificates. The NRPs invested $40 million in the stock market.

The central bank’s foreign exchange reserves rose to $10.309 billion in the week ending June 24 from $8.237 billion a week ago after China lent $2.3 billion to Pakistan.

However, the country’s soaring imports and a fresh bout of uncertainty about the restart of the IMF loan programme put pressure on the forex reserves and local currency.

Pakistan’s trade deficit swelled to an all-time high of $48.66 billion in the fiscal year ended June 30, 2022, from $30.96 billion a year ago, showing an increase of 57 percent fuelled by hefty imports amid higher global oil and other commodity prices.

The import bill increased 43.45 percent to $80.51 billion in FY2022. Pakistan’s exports jumped 26.6 percent to $31.845 billion in the just-ended fiscal year.

The current account gap rose to $1.4 billion in May from $618 million a month ago. The deficit widened to $15.2 billion in 11 months of this fiscal year from $1.2 billion a year earlier.