ISLAMABAD    -    Minister of State for Finance and Revenue Dr Aisha Ghous Pasha on Wednesday said that Pakistan is expecting to re­ceive $2 billion including $1.5 billion from Asian Develop­ment Bank (ADB) and $500 million from Asian Infrastruc­ture Investment Bank (AIIB). She made these remarks while briefing the Senate Standing Committee on Finance here.

The minister said, “We are all going through a difficult time and accepting potential inflows from different financial institu­tions and friendly countries.”

She informed that Sau­di Arabia had already rolled over $3 billion loan and ne­gotiation was in process with Qatar and United Arab Emirates (UAE). She high­lighted that the destruc­tion came due to the recent floods, which was a natural disaster. This is the respon­sibility of the national com­munity to help us come out of the crisis. United Nations Asian Development Bank and World Bank are working joint­ly to determine the damages needs assessment, she added.

The meeting, chaired by Senator Saleem Mandviwal­la, expressed concerns over the current economic situa­tion, especially rupee depreci­ation despite revival of Inter­national Monetary Fund’s loan programme. Members demand­ed that Finance Minister Miftah Ismail should brief the com­mittee on the economic situ­ation of the country. The Sen­ate body rejected the Bill titled “The State-Owned Enterprises (Governance and Operations)” by majority vote, while Senator Shaukat Fayaz Ahmed Tarin ab­stain from voting. Senator Saa­dia Abbasi stated that the gov­ernment should not endorse previous govt bill and make new bills in the light of their own policies. She further added that government did not require any bill for good governance.

The committee discussed the matter of overcharge on issuance of LCs by banks. Senator Shau­kat Tarin apprised that owing to this incurring problem, trad­ers have been making payments from dubai accounts for goods imported from Shanghai. He fur­ther added that the banks have issued LCs on Rs 240 or above when dollar values at Rs.230 in interbank and profit of banks in­creased around 100 p.c. Officials of UBL and Bank Al Habib told that in August, they have suffered the loss around Rs.700 Million and Rs.500 million respectively.

Dr. Inayat Hussain, Deputy Governor SBP, told that the state bank has initiated the inquiry into matter and report will be presented before committee.

The matter of unprecedented rise in dollar value was also de­liberated. Senator Shaukat Tarin inquired as to why dollar value is rising even after the IMF bailout.

Aisha Ghaus Pasha main­tained that unfortunately Paki­stan shares in global emissions is around 1 per cent but it is among the most affected countries due to climate change. She added that the flood has added to the prob­lems of already devasted econo­my and government is in nego­tiations with Saudia Arabia and Qatar for investment in key sec­tors in order to provide strength to the dwindling economy.

Senator Saleem Mandviwal­la stated that “Bangladesh has more reserves than Pakistan but they have taken more strin­gent measures than us”. He sug­gested that restrictions should be put on use of fuel for cars and bikes as large sum of country is being spent on the payment for fuel imports.