Dhaka, Bangladesh (BBN)- Bangladesh’s foreign exchange reserve has crossed US$9.0-billion mark again after receiving a fund from a multilateral donor agency, officials said on Thursday.

Continuing purchase of US dollar by the central bank from commercial banks has also pushed the foreign exchange reserve up, the Bangladesh Bank (BB), the country’s central bank, officials added.

The International Monetary Fund (IMF) has released funds worth $106 million more as part of the Special Drawing Rights (SDR) allocation, which has been made to all 186 IMF members.

The foreign exchange reserve rose to $9.07 billion on the day from $8.79 billion of the previous day following disbursement of the fund by the IMF, the central bank officials confirmed.

The country’s foreign exchange reserve rose to $9.18 billion for the first time on September 1 this year following disbursement of a fund worth $618 million by the IMF.

The Washington-based multilateral donor agency provided $618 million recently to bolster the country’s foreign exchange reserve in the wake of the global economic recession.

The total $724 million was given as part of the global financial watchdog’s stepped-up effort to inject liquidity in the central banks across the globe, they added.

“We expect that the foreign exchange reserve would stay at around $9.0 billion even after making payment to the ACU,” Deputy Governor of the BB Ziaul Hassan Siddiqui said on September 1, 2009.

The foreign exchange reserve came down to $8.643 billion in the central bank on September 6 after a routine payment of $522 million to the Asian Clearing Union (ACU) against imports during July-August this year.

The ACU is an arrangement among the central banks of Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Iran, Myanmar, Nepal, Pakistan and Sri Lanka to settle trade-related payments on a multilateral basis.

Besides, the central bank of Bangladesh continues its intervention in the inter-bank foreign exchange market through purchase of the U.S. currency directly from commercial banks, which has also pushed the foreign exchange reserve up.

As part of the move, the BB purchased $1.202 billion from commercial banks until September 10 this fiscal.

In fiscal 2008-09, the BB bought a total of $1.48 billion directly from the commercial banks against only $202.50 million of the previous fiscal, according to the central bank statistics.

BBN/SS/SI/AD-11September09-1:45 am (BST)