KARACHI: Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) into the country continued its rising trend despite the emergence of coronavirus as it jumped by 137 per cent during the first nine months of current fiscal year while inflows in March also surged by 92pc.
The State Bank of Pakistan’s (SBP) latest data issued on Monday showed the country received $2.148 billion in FDI during July-March period – up 137pc – compared to $905 million in the corresponding period last year.
Last year, the FDI fell to its lowest since FY16 as inflows dipped to $1.362bn.
In addition, March also saw increased inflows by 92pc to $278.7m compared to same month last year. But inflows in March, compared to February, saw a sharp slide downward to $278.7m from $562.6m.
According to SBP, the overall foreign private investment increased by 312pc to $2.044bn during July-March compared to just $495.6m in the same period last fiscal year.
Country-wise details showed China as the keen investor in the country as it suddenly pumped FDI during the period under review. The data showed inflows from China during the nine months jumped to $872m compared to just $22.4m in the same period last fiscal year.
Inflows from United States remained relatively unchanged at $64.9m during the nine months compared to $64.5m last year. Inflows from UK dropped significantly to $90.4m during the period compared to $150m last year.
Other important inflows were $167m and $135m, from Malta and Hong Kong respectively.
The debt relief for one year from global lenders and additional help of $1.4bn from the International Monetary Fund have strengthened the SBP’s foreign exchange reserves helping the local currency gain against greenback.
T-bills see renewed inflows
Special convertible rupee account data released on Monday showed $200 million inflow into treasury bills along with an outflow of $9mn.
The inflow came one day after the central bank cut interest rates by 2 percentage points in an emergency meeting.
According to bankers it landed late in the trading session and jolted the exchange rate.
Published in Dawn, April 21st, 2020