ISLAMABAD - Finance Minister Senator Ishaq Dar on Tuesday vowed to recover every single dollar from Untied States (US) pending under Coalition Support Fund (CSF).
“Old days are gone. We will recover even a single dollar from US under CSF”, said Finance Minister Ishaq Dar in a press conference. United States has to reimburse $1.5 billion to Pakistan under CSF, in which country would receive $381 million by January 2014. The government has asked the US authorities for early release of CSF and they have assured to consider it, he added. Finance Minister admitted that inflation rate has increased in PML-N’s tenure and held previous government of Pakistan Peoples Party and interim government responsible for it. The inflation increased due to four factors including power tariff hike, clearance of circular debt, shortfall in taxes and imposition of new taxes.
Addressing a press conference along with his economic team, Finance Minister claimed that macroeconomic indicators have performed well in the so far period of the current fiscal year. He informed that country’s GDP growth has been recorded at 5 percent during the first quarter (July-September) of the current financial year 2013-2014, which was only 2.9 percent in the corresponding period. The government is committed to take GDP growth rate to 7 to 8 percent in next few years, he added.
Dar said that agricultural sector has recorded growth of 2.5 percent, industrial sector 5.2 percent and services sector 5.7 percent during first quarter of current fiscal year. He informed that budget deficit has recorded at Rs 570 billion (2.2 percent of the GDP) during first quarter of the ongoing fiscal year, which was Rs 690 billion (2.9 percent of the GDP) of last year.
Finance Minister said that revenue collection has shown growth of 17 percent, as FBR collected Rs 792 billion during first five months (July-November) of the present financial year, which was Rs 679 billion in last year.
Talking about reserves, he said that reserves declined to lesser inflow, which would start increasing in the months to come.
Senator Ishaq Dar said that State Bank of Pakistan has received $137 million from Islamic Development Bank (IDB) today (Tuesday). IFC would provide $500 million for trade financing facility. He added that government would launch three bonds including global rupee bond, euro bond $ 500 million and remittance-based Bond.
He informed that government would generate Rs 200 billion from privatization process during the ongoing fiscal year. He hoped that government would receive pending $800 million from Etisalat against privatization of PTCL in near future, as decisive meeting is expected with their management on December 18.
Finance Minister said that government would initiate the process of 3G licenses from February 2014, which would generate $1.2 to $2 billion. He informed that remittances have shown growth of seven percent, as it recorded at $6.4 billion in first five months against $5.9 billion of last year.
“Non-availability of dollar currency notes and speculative activities in the market were reasons behind dollar volatility. Exchange rate has improved to Rs 107.15 (interbank) and Rs 107.15 (kerb) as of 3 p.m today”, he added. He informed that government has cleared circular debt from its own resources and rejected the impression of printing new notes.