Resurrection of the Economy

Pakistan’s economy has struggled to move forward due to multiple factors, particularly the devastating floods in 2022-23. These ravages have led to an inflation rate of 24.8 percent, according to the International Monetary Fund report, and a food inflation rate of 25 percent, which remains higher than that of neighboring countries. The country needs to escape stagflation as the investment level is low, standing at 13.6 percent of its Gross Domestic Product in 2024. Currently, the economy experiences a zig-zag motion due to high imports and low exports. Similarly, the rupee is depreciating compared to last year.

Will Pakistan always require the heavy hand of the IMF to boost its economy? The IMF’s conditions are tough on the middle and lower classes but beneficial for the political elites. The poor are being crushed under the IMF tranches as they come with severe conditions. Analysts say Pakistan needs $25 billion to repay foreign loans with interest. Moody’s had predicted an obvious chance of Pakistan’s default last year. According to the FIA’s annual immigration report, more than a million people left Pakistan in 2023 due to soaring inflation. Although the IMF bailout will help maintain the economy, it is an artificial solution. What the government needs to address is settling political issues with opposition parties for the development of Pakistan. The IT sector should be fully supported, and youths must be given technical and skill-based education. Pakistan has 58.7 million young people, but unfortunately, most are unemployed, and brain drain significantly harms the economy. In India, youth contribute 34 percent to the Gross National Product, aged 15-29. Hence, the time has come to stand together for the revival of the economy. Politicians need to work for the larger interests of Pakistan rather than eliminating rival political parties. The involvement of economists in decision-making will be fruitful for the resurrection of the economy.

MUHAMMAD AMJID KHAN,

Waziristan.

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