State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) Governor Jameel Ahmad informed the National Assembly’s Standing Committee on Finance and Revenue on Tuesday that eight banks are being investigated for their alleged role in exchange rate manipulation.
The central bank governor said that in the first phase the investigation is being conducted against Habib Bank Limited, United Bank Limited, Allied Bank Limited, National Bank of Pakistan, Bank Al Habib, Standard Chartered, Meezan Bank, and HabibMetro Bank.
The governor added that more banks will be investigated in the second phase. He said that the licenses of two exchange companies have also been canceled for their role in exchange rate manipulation. He mentioned that the central bank monitors the activities of banks as well as exchange companies.
The committee members said that banks involved in exchange rate manipulation have played with the country’s economy and questioned why the central bank didn’t act earlier against the banks.
Members of the committee mentioned that even a difference of Rs. 10 was seen in the interbank rate and open market rate on some days in the previous weeks.
The committee’s chairman, lawmaker Qaiser Ahmad Sheikh, instructed the central bank to take appropriate action against banks and exchange companies found involved in this manipulation.
Minister of State for Finance and Revenue Dr. Ayesha Ghaus Pasha assured the committee that the central bank will take action against banks guilty.
The meeting was attended by members of the committee, Minister of State for Finance, Secretary Finance, Federal Board of Revenue Chairman, SBP Governor, and other senior officers.