Efforts are being made for an early agreement with Pakistan, the IMF

Olivia Smith

Nathan Porter, mission chief of the International Monetary Fund (IMF), has said that efforts are being made for an early agreement with Pakistan. He will continue negotiations with Pakistan.

The IMF Mission Chief has fully acknowledged the recent efforts made by Pakistan.

Nathan Porter said that efforts are being made for an early agreement with Pakistan, Pakistan has taken decisive steps to make policies more compatible, Pakistan’s economic decision-making has improved the issues of the debt program, increasing tax revenue in the budget approved by the parliament is a good step. , increasing tax revenue will enable funding for Pakistan’s social sector.

He said that the increase in tax revenue will provide funds for development work in Pakistan, strict monetary policy will help in controlling inflation, improvement in the foreign exchange market will reduce the balance of payment pressure, with IMF Pakistan. Negotiations will continue.

Telephonic communication between Prime Minister Shahbaz Sharif and MDIMF

Earlier, Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif called IMF Managing Director Kristalina Georgieva early on Tuesday. The Prime Minister and the Managing Director of the IMF discussed the issues related to the IMF program.

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Shahbaz Sharif reiterated his determination to achieve the goals of improving the economic situation through joint efforts and hoped that coordination on the points of the IMF program would take the form of the IMF’s decision in the next couple of days.

The Managing Director of the IMF acknowledged the efforts of the Finance Minister and his team in completing the IMF program in the context of the meetings held with the Prime Minister in Paris.

The prime minister hoped that coordination on the points of the IMF program would take the form of an IMF decision in the next couple of days.

He reiterated his determination to achieve the goals of improving the economic situation through joint efforts.

The managing director of IMF while talking to the Prime Minister said that he wants to improve the economic situation of Pakistan, he appreciated the leadership determination of Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif.

It should be noted that the period of the $6.7 billion loan program is ending on June 30, before which Pakistan has to get about $2.2 billion in two tranches, according to the seventh and eighth joint assessments of the State Bank of Pakistan from the International Monetary Fund. After the installment of one billion 16 crore dollars was received on September 1, 2022.

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The IMF had raised questions over the measures taken in the 2023-2024 budget while rating agencies warned that time was running out for Pakistan to convince the IMF on the bailout package.

After revising the budget as per IMF demands, the government is expected to announce approval from the international lender in the next few days to get the much-needed bailout funds.

After the budget was announced on June 9, Esther Perez Ruiz, the IMF representative in Pakistan, publicly questioned the budget’s actions, saying that the budget missed an opportunity to broaden the tax base in a more progressive manner and The long list of new tax charges further reduced the transparency of the tax system.

Esther Perez Ruiz also expressed concern that the new tax amnesty scheme is against the terms of the fund program and the governance agenda and sets a wrong precedent, asking the government to revise the budget before approving it. Said to do.

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Officials in Pakistan said those demands had now been met, with one official saying yesterday that ‘almost all the angst between IMF staff and the finance ministry had been resolved just hours before the finance minister’s final budget speech. ‘was granted’, the announcement of the successful completion of the ninth review is a prerogative of the IMF and is now a mere formality.

The official said it was now up to the IMF mission to set final dates for executive board approval and disbursal of funds, but acknowledged that it was not on the calendar until June 30, when the 2019 half-year is due. The $6 billion Extended Fund Facility is about to expire.

Among the measures taken by the government under the revision of the budget are additional tax measures of 215 billion rupees, reduction of 85 billion rupees in expenditure, withdrawal of amnesty on the inflow of foreign exchange, removal of import restrictions, Beneezir Income Support Program. The allocation includes an increase of Rs 16 billion and options to increase the petroleum levy from Rs 50 to Rs 60 per litre.

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