KARACHI:

The Pakistan stock market soared by over 2%, or over 1,000 points, to a two-year high at 48,000 points in early trading on Monday.

Pakistan Stock Exchange (PSX) has maintained the powerful rally over “optimism of investment from Saudi Arabia and UAE along with the Pakistan Mineral Summit helping investors confidence,” Topline Securities CEO Muhammad Sohail said in a comment to The Express Tribune.

Saudi Arabia has held talks with Barrick Gold to invest in Pakistan’s multi-billion dollar copper mining reserves. The investment can help the country earn much-needed US dollars, building foreign exchange reserves.

Besides, the Chinese vice prime minister has arrived in Islamabad on a two-day visit to mark CPEC’s 10-year anniversary. This is another positive development for Pakistan with a lot of good and bad happening at the global level.

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The strong rally at the PSX has also been attributed to the expected announcement of a new benchmark interest rate by the State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) for the next six weeks today (Monday).

Financial experts stand divided on whether the bank would increase the rate by 100 basis points or leave it unchanged at its current historical high of 22%.

The market has increased by around 16% or 6,600 points to date since Pakistan acquired the latest $3 billion loan program from IMF in June 2023, according to Arif Habib Limited.

The market has, however, ignored a suicide attack on the JUI-F convention, taking the lives of over 40 people and injuring another over 200 people.

Pakistani assemblies are also scheduled to dissolve next month ahead of the general elections later this year.

Earlier this month, Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif pledged unwavering commitment to the recent $3 billion agreement with the International Monetary Fund (IMF), ensuring that the interim setup taking over after his government’s term would also fully adhere to the deal.

 





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