$732m ACU payment to hit forex reserve below $10bStaff Correspondent
The country’s foreign exchange reserve is likely to tumble below $10 billion as the government will have to pay imports bill to the Asian Clearing Union within today.
Bangladesh Bank officials told New Age on Monday that the government would have to pay $732 million to the Asian Clearing Union to clear import bills.
They said the payment will be released today as it is a mandatory rule for the ACU countries to release the bill within first eight days of every two months, the officials said.
The central bank statistics on Monday showed that the reserve stood on a strong position of $10.23 billion as the country received the first instalment of the International Monetary Fund loan under Extended Credit Facility.
The IMF on April 25 released the first instalment of $141 million out of around $1 billion loan sanctioned for Bangladesh under ECF. As a result, the forex reserve stood at $10.153 billion on the day.
After the current ACU payment, the country’s forex reserve would fall to around $9.50 billion, a BB official said.
The reserve had reached a record $11.32 billion in March 2011. But it decreased gradually to $8.90 billion in January because of higher imports of fuel oil for rental power plants.
Bangladesh had to make an ACU payment of around $840 million in November, $746.32 million in January, and $893 million in March to meet its import liabilities to different countries.
The member countries of ACU are Bangladesh, Bhutan, Iran, India, Maldives, Nepal, Pakistan, Sri Lanka and Myanmar.
Another BB official said the central bank had taken steps to curb the devaluation of Taka against the US dollar through reducing the import growth. As a result, the value of Taka became stable against the dollar in the last few months, he said.
The purchase rate of one dollar was Tk 81.85 and the sale rate was Tk 81.90 on Thursday, coming down from Tk 84.40 and Tk 84.48 on January 31, 2012.
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