Caretakers claim Pakistan can get $6b inflows by end of this year

PM Anwaarul Haq Kakar chairs SIFC Apex Committee meeting attended by COAS General Syed Asim Munir, federal ministers, chief ministers n PM approves various practical steps to be operationalised as soon as possible n Info minister says steps being taken to reduce govt’s expenditure n Finance minister says govt adopts holistic approach to revive economy n Energy minister claims efforts underway to reduce line losses in power sector n Industries minister says it is the time to open market for raw materials.


ISLAMABAD  -  The fifth meeting of the Special Investment Facilitation Coun­cil's (SIFC) Apex Committee held here on Friday with a spe­cial focus to improve the over­all business and investment en­vironment in the country being imperative for ‘economic revival’. 

The meeting was chaired by Caretaker Prime Minister An­waarul Haq Kakar and attend­ed by Chief of Army Staff, feder­al cabinet members, provincial chief ministers and high-level government officials. 

The ministries concerned pre­sented their plans/roadmaps to overcome the macroeconomic challenges, governance related impediments and voids in regu­latory mechanisms in a bid to at­tract both foreign and domestic investment, and stimulate eco­nomic growth. 

The committee deliberated upon various measures to be taken in short, medium and long terms to reap the envisaged div­idends. Various practical steps were approved by the prime minister that will be operation­alised as soon as possible. 

The prime minister asked the ministries to deliver optimal re­sults irrespective of the time that was available with the care­taker government and empha­sized to lay a strong foundation for the future government.

Addressing a press conference along with federal ministers in Islamabad on Friday, Caretak­er Minister for Information and Broadcasting Murtaza Solangi says steps are being taken to pro­mote investments in the country. Murtaza Solangi also said steps are also being taken to reduce government’s expenditure. He said issues related to smuggling, dollar and other commodities were discussed during Friday’s meeting of Special Investment Facilitation Council. Speaking on the occasion, Caretaker Minister for Finance Dr Shamshad Akhtar said we intend to enhance so­cial safety net amidst structur­al adjustments. She said we are making concerted efforts to aug­ment macroeconomic stability. She said our priority is to ensure supply of energy to industrial sector.

Caretaker Finance Minister Shamshad Akhtar on Friday said that the country is likely to receive $6billion inflows from the multiple sources during the current year 2023 including next tranche from the Interna­tional Monetary Fund (IMF).

Addressing a press confer­ence, the minister said that the IMF would hold next review with Pakistan in November this year, which would pave way for releasing next loan tranche by the end of current year. 

She further said that the coun­try would also receive loans from the World Bank and Asian Development Bank. Overall, the country would receive $6 bil­lion from different sources, she added. While answering a ques­tion of a reporter Dr Shamshad Akhtar said, “Once our imports will be open and 2nd review of IMF is done in November, we can potentially get payments from IMF, Asian development Bank, world bank and we can possibly get $6 billion inflows by the end of this year.” 

When asked about figures of smuggling she said we don’t have any figures of inflation oth­erwise it would’ve been easy to eradicate it.

Dr Shamshad Akhtar also said that the caretaker government had adopted a holistic approach to address the pressing issues being faced by the economy and develop a roadmap with an aim to augment the macroeconom­ic management. “We will oper­ate really holistically and con­sistently as a team. This will be an important change that in­charges of all segments will work together,” she said while addressing a press conference. A principle had been adopted to look at the government as a whole, she added. Dr Shamshad said subcommittees of the cab­inet had already been institu­tionalised, including Economic Coordination Committee (ECC), Executive Committee of Nation­al Economic Council (ECNEC), Cabinet Committee on Privat­ization (CCoP), and Cabinet Committee on Energy.

She said they were having in­tergovernmental discussions with one another and making sincere efforts to define a road­map for augmenting the mac­roeconomic management in the country. She said the gov­ernment was reinforcing fis­cal stability and fiscal coordi­nation with monetary policy as well as external policy, as it an anchor of macroeconomic man­agement. She said the caretaker setup wanted to revive econo­my and for that they were work­ing to “define the steps for eco­nomic jump start”. Along with that they were making efforts to enhance social safety net during the period when structural ad­justment reforms programme was implemented.

“We will try to enhance the so­cial safety net and more impor­tantly financial inclusion will be expedited so that SME (small medium enterprises) and agri­culture sectors, and citizens get an opportunity for financial em­powerment through digitiza­tion.” According to the official, the government is now expect­ing to receive around $6 billion dollars in next few months from the different sources. The IMF would release around one bil­lion dollars if it satisfies with the economic situation of the coun­try. The government is expect­ing $1 billion from Islamic De­velopment Bank, $450 million from the World Bank and $250 million from Asian Infrastruc­ture Investment within the on­going month. The country might receive $300 million to $500 million of Geneva pledges for flood affected areas and $1 bil­lion to $2 billion minimum from UAE commercial banks, which will not rolled over during the last few months. In the July this year, the IMF Executive Board had approved a 9-month Stand-By Arrangement (SBA) for Paki­stan for an amount of SDR2,250 million (about $3 billion, or 111 percent of quota) to support the authorities’ economic sta­bilization program. The Execu­tive Board’s approval allowed for an immediate disbursement of SDR894 million (or about US$1.2 billion). Earlier, Saudi Arabia had released $2 billion and UAE deposited one billion dollars in State Bank of Paki­stan account. Overall, the coun­try had received $4.2 billion in July this year. The inflows had increased the country’s foreign exchange reserves in the range of $13 billion to $14 billion.

ePaper - Nawaiwaqt