Karachi: Pakistan's currency has dropped by 64 paise against the dollar, owing to the high demand for import payments on the last day of the trading week.
According to the currency dealers of the country, the rupee weakened 0.40 per cent against the dollar on Friday because of high demand for the US currency to pay for imports, The News International reported. In the interbank market, the rupee was quoted closing at 159.94 to the dollar, compared with Thursday's close of 159.30. It fell by 64 paisas during the session.
"Today, the outflows were higher than inflows. The mismatch between demand and supply of dollars added to pressure on the domestic currency," said a currency dealer.
"There had been oil, commodities and machinery and equipment imports," he added.
The rupee has lost 1.31 per cent against the dollar since the beginning of this fiscal year. Increased demand for dollars especially for oil payments as a result of rising international prices pushed the rupee down.
The rupee declined by 60 paisas in the kerb market. It ended at 160.30 per dollar, compared with 159.70 in the previous session, The News International further reported.
People of Pakistan have been hit by inflation and have been witnessing hikes in prices in several things including petrol and food items.
Pakistan has increased the price of sugar, wheat flour and ghee on Friday. Prior to that, it increased the petrol price by Rs 5.40 per litre and the high-speed diesel (HSD) by Rs 2.54 per litre.
The price of sugar was jacked up from Rs 68 per kg to Rs 85 per kg, ghee (butter) from Rs 170 to Rs 260 per kg and wheat flour from Rs 850 per bag to Rs 950 per bag at the USC owing to the increasing gap between the subsidised prices offered by the Utility Stores Corporation and the prevailing market prices.
According to a World Bank (WB) estimate, poverty in Pakistan has increased from 4.4 per cent to 5.4 per cent in 2020, as over two million people have fallen below the poverty line.
Using the lower-middle-income poverty rate, the WB estimated that the poverty ratio in Pakistan stood at 39.3 per cent in 2020-21 and is projected to remain at 39.2 per cent in 2021-22 and might come down to 37.9 per cent by 2022-23, reported The News International.