ISLAMABAD, April 16 (Xinhua) -- The government of Pakistan is planning to raise 500 million U.S. dollars to 1 billion U.S. dollars a year through issuing a U.S. dollar-denominated certificate for overseas Pakistanis.
The local media quoted Director General of National Savings Zafar Masud as saying that the government is in search for ways to shore up its depleting forex reserves which have hit a three-year low.
The Pakistani government is likely to launch the U.S. dollar-denominated certificate by June 2018, before the general elections which are due in the country later this year, he added.
Zafar Masud said the Pakistani economic managers have already sought bids, which will expire on April 30, to appoint financial managers for the transaction.
He mentioned that Pakistan was one of the few nations in the world which have not yet offered such a product to its overseas citizens.
The National Savings official was of the belief that the certificate would offer better returns to the overseas Pakistanis than what they were getting from other such products in their home markets.
In the wake of depreciating Pakistani rupee against the U.S. dollar and rising trade deficit, the country is in the middle of a balance of payment crisis, which has also hurt the country's foreign exchange reserves.
Earlier this month, Pakistani Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi launched the country's first tax amnesty scheme, which was aimed at including the undeclared foreign assets into the national records. The international accounting firm A.F Ferguson has estimated that Pakistanis have foreign assets worth 150 billion U.S. dollars.