Government Urges IMF Mission Chief To Visit Pakistan In Light Of The Depletion Of Dollars

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The federal government has requested that the International Monetary Fund (IMF) deploy its team to cash-strapped Pakistan the next week to finish the ninth review for the release of the next loan tranche, which has been delayed since September.

As the South Asian country’s foreign currency reserves continue to dwindle, threatening crucial imports and generating a fresh wave of inflation, sources indicate that the government is prepared to execute on the four primary requirements of the global lender for the renewal of the loan programme.

The IMF has made four main requirements in order to revive the programme. These are: a price hike for gas and electricity, a market-based exchange rate, and more taxes to fund the budget deficit.

Finance Secretary Hamed Yaqoob Shaikh has officially requested that the IMF mission chief visit Pakistan next week in an effort to revive the country’s stalled loan package.

At a press conference on the margins of the Geneva summit, a government official said that all four conditions made by the IMF had been met.

According to another government official, Pakistan cannot afford to have discussions with the international lender break down because of the potential consequences for the country.

The IMF provided almost $1.1 billion in August of last year after approving the seventh and eighth reviews jointly.

Minister of State for Finance Aisha Ghaus Pasha on Thursday informed the Senate Standing Committee on Finance that the government intends to continue programme with the IMF in such a manner that the ordinary man should not suffer the weight of harsh choices to be taken as per the Fund’s condition.

According to Mrs. Pasha, the government’s economic team is meeting with Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif to discuss the country’s IMF programme. She said the prime minister was opposed to any tax increases that would disproportionately affect the working class and the poor.

The administration is committed to moving through with the initiative after a thorough workout, but she did not provide a date when discussions with the IMF delegation would begin. After last year’s devastating floods, she claimed the government will attempt to persuade the IMF of the dire situation in Pakistan. “The people are already suffering due to the devastating floods, and they are not in a position to finance any extra measures.”

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