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Pakistan central bank leaves interest rates unchanged at 7%

KARACHI, Sept 21 (Reuters) - Pakistan’s central bank held its benchmark policy rate at 7% on Monday, saying the economy looked set to pick up due to the lifting of lockdown restrictions aimed at curbing the coronavirus pandemic.

“Business confidence and the outlook for growth have improved,” the State Bank of Pakistan said in its monetary policy statement. “This reflects the decline of COVID-19 cases in Pakistan and the easing of lockdowns.”

The central bank in June slashed rates by 100 basis points to 7% to help counter the fallout of the pandemic on economic activity. (Reporting by Syed Raza Hasan; Writing by Charlotte Greenfield; Editing by Alex Richardson)

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