Prime Minister Imran Khan’s Adviser on Finance, Dr. Abdul Hafeez Sheikh, on Thursday (May 16) while speaking in Karachi,first time broke silence on Pakistan’s loan agreement with International Monetary Fund (IMF) and said that government had agreed on low interest rates for the economic package from the global lender. He said that the World Bank and Asian Development Bank were also expected to provide an additional $2bn to $3bn following the IMF package.
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“When this government took control, the total debt on the country was at Rs.31 trillion. In the past two years, foreign exchange reserves have come down from $18 billion to less than $10bn. The country’s trade deficit, the difference between exports and imports, was more than $20bn annually,” said the finance adviser.
Salient features of agreement:
Dr. Hafeez Sheikh has highlighted the following salient features of the agreement:
While talking about historic rupee fall in open market he said, “The markets are coping with a tough situation, which has emerged due to foreign debt to the tune of $97 billion. This debt has eroded the country’s foreign currency reserves which are down to $9 billion at present from as high as $18 billion in the recent past”.
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