US dollar likely to hit Rs 150 mark: Report

US dollar likely to hit Rs 150 mark: Report

ISLAMABAD - Pakistan is facing a shortage of dollars because our imports are more than double our exports. For every dollar earned, we spend two, which leaves us with fewer reserves to pay for essential imports (oil, raw materials, machinery etc), and to repay its foreign loans (more than $90 billion).

To address this balance of payment crisis, the government has been exploring all options from seeking a loan from the International Monetary Fund to taking help from friendly countries.

So far, we have secured back-to-back aid packages worth $6 billion from Saudi Arabia and UAE. We have already received $2 billion from the Saudis, which provided temporary stability in the exchange rates by increasing our dollar reserves.

However, the country needs more dollars to continue payment of essential imports and foreign loan because its reserves stand at $7.4 billion, not enough to sustain even two months of imports.

The talks with the IMF have delayed already and there are reports we cannot join the IMF program until March 2019. Market analysts say the dollar may go further up in case of a further delay in talks with the IMF.

Prior to the recent increases, some analysts predicted it would cross Rs140 level but a few even said it might touch Rs150 by June 2019.