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Pakistan's central bank keeps policy rate at 6%

The State Bankof Pakistan on April 9 said it decided to keep the policy rateunchanged at 6% asinflation trend in the country climbs up.

In March, headline CPI rose to 3.9% from 1.3% in September2015, while the period average inflation increased to 2.6% from 1.7% over thesame period. The central bank said the trend was anticipated, adding that itstill expects inflation to be benign for the rest of 2016.

The trend also shows a pickup in aggregate demand amidimproved security situations and real incomes. Lending to the private sectoralso increased and is expected to continue until the end of 2016, the centralbank noted.

Meanwhile, the cushion provided by lower oil prices, growthin inflow of foreign remittances and calmer international capital marketsimproved sentiments in the foreign exchange markets, the central bank said.