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Pakistan To Receive $6-8 Billion IMF Package: Asad Umar

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Finance Minister Asad Umar on Monday confirmed that the bailout agreement with the International Monetary Fund (IMF) would be around $6-8 billion.

Briefing the National Assembly’s Standing Committee on Finance, Revenue and Economic Affairs chaired by Faizullah Kamoka, Asad Umar confirmed that Pakistan and the IMF have reached an bailout agreement. The agreement was reached during Pakistan delegation’s recent visit to the United States.

Pakistan would receive funds from the Asian Development Fund and the World Bank in addition to the IMF bailout, which the finance minister said would ease pressure off the country’s foreign reserves.

The final value of the bailout package would be decided during a visit of the IMF mission to Islamabad, expected soon.

Earlier this month, inflation hit 9.41 percent, a five-year high. Petrol prices were increased by Rs6 per litre amid severe backlash faced by the ruling PTI. The prices of light diesel and kerosene oil increased by Rs3 per litre each, while high-speed diesel soared to Rs117.43.

Pakistan’s external debt would increase to $120 billion in the next two years, economist and former finance minister Dr Hafeez A Pasha said writes in his book.

The reason for the increase is Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI)’s continuous borrowing of money from the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and friendly nations e.g. China, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates (UAE).

Pasha predicts that Pakistan’s GDP growth is expected to fall sharply from 5.8 percent in 2017-18 to 3.8 percent in ongoing fiscal year 2018-19 due to large devaluation. Inflation would come down to 6.3 percent by 2019-20 and fiscal deficit would continue to decline at a modest rate to 5 percent of the GDP by 2020-21.

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