S Arabia rolls over $3bn deposit for another year

News Desk
Thursday, Nov 30, 2023


ISLAMABAD: The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA) has extended the term of its $3 billion deposit with the State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) for another year.

“The Saudi Fund for Development (SFD) on behalf of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia has extended the term for the deposit of USD 3 billion maturing on 5 December 2023 for another one year,” the SBP announced in a statement on Wednesday.

The extension of the term of deposit is a continuation of the support provided by the Kingdom to Pakistan, which will help maintain the foreign currency reserves of Pakistan and contribute to the economic growth of the country, the statement added.

“The $3 billion rollover is an important move in securing $25 billion in gross financing needs estimated by Pakistan for FY-24,” former adviser to the Ministry of Finance Khaqan Najeeb said.

He said the extension in the deposit term would help solidify the ongoing IMF programme as the Fund was seeking confirmation from lenders and friendly countries on their commitments to Pakistan.

Moreover, the analyst said the rollover would pave the way for IMF Executive Board’s approval for the second loan tranche of $700 million.

The $3 billion deposit agreement was initially signed through the SFD with the SBP in 2021 and rolled over subsequently in 2022, after the issuance of the “royal directives that reflect the continuation of the close relationship between the two brotherly countries”.

Meanwhile, Caretaker Prime Minister Anwaar-ul-Haq Kakar and Crown Prince of Kuwait Sheikh Meshal Al Ahmed Al Jaber Al Sabah met on Wednesday and agreed to further deepen the bilateral relationship in diverse fields.

The prime minister reaffirmed the importance Pakistan attached to its relationship with Kuwait and reiterated the desire to further expand bilateral cooperation in diverse fields, the PM Office’s Media Wing said.

PM Kakar underscored the resolve to forge deeper economic engagement between Pakistan and Kuwait including trade, energy, information technology, labour, mineral and investments.

He expressed satisfaction over the close cooperation between the two countries at multilateral fora.

He appreciated the measures undertaken by Kuwait for recruitment of Pakistani manpower in the fields of health, security and infrastructure.

The Kuwaiti crown prince reciprocated the sentiments of the PM and reiterated the desire to further deepen and broaden bilateral relations with Pakistan.

The caretaker PM is on a two-day official visit to Kuwait with the primary objective of signing of memorandums of understanding in multiple areas, geared to transform the six-decade long bilateral relations into mutually beneficial economic ties.

Chief of Army Staff General Asim Munir was also present during the meeting, the PM Office Media Wing said.

The two leaders also witnessed the signing of seven agreements concluded to attract multibillion-dollar investment from the State of Kuwait in various sectors of Pakistan including food security/agriculture, hydel power, water supplies (safe drinking water and supporting mining activities), establishment of mining fund to support mineral industry, Technology Zones Development and Mangrove Preservation. In addition, three MoUs in the fields of culture and art, environment and sustainable development were also signed.

The leaders expressed great satisfaction at the trajectory of relations, agreed to remain in close contact, and take swift steps in further strengthening and deepening Pakistan-Kuwait relations.

The Pakistan prime minister termed the agreements with Kuwait another milestone in the achievements which the Special Investment Facilitation Council (SIFC) platform was bringing to the country.

The prime minister also prayed for the good health of Sheikh Nawaf Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah, the Emir of the State of Kuwait.