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Business & Finance

Current COVID wave threatens Pakistan's economic recovery: Tarin

  • “The current IMF program was quite difficult and such conditions were imposed, which has a political cost as well," said Tarin.
Published May 5, 2021
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Finance Minister Shaukat Tarin on Wednesday has said that the current wave of coronavirus pandemic is threatening the process of the economic recovery of Pakistan.

Briefing media persons, the finance minister said that Pakistan was facing a number of issues such as a trade gap of $20 billion alongside debt payment issues, which compelled the government to approach the International Monetary Fund (IMF).

“However, this time around the environment was not the same as it was in 2008 when I went to the IMF,” he said.

“The current IMF program was quite difficult and such conditions were imposed, which has a political cost as well. However, the present government was able to follow the stringent conditions of the IMF and was able to move the economy towards stability and it was time to move towards growth,” he said.

On the IMF program, the finance minister said that Pakistan will not leave the IMF program, and the program is ongoing, but the IMF has been told that we need to facilitated due to the third wave of COVID-19.

“We told the IMF that 92pc of the revenue target was being collected, however, due to the third COVID wave, the collection has come down to 57pc. We will increase the tax net, but we have told the IMF not to give us the revenue target,” he said.

"Our philosophy is that we have to move from the stabilization phase towards growth mode. In order to achieve this growth, we need to incentivize industries, agriculture, and the housing sector in order to generate employment and bring growth," he said.

The Finance Minister said that the Prime Minister was concerned about reducing inflation for the common man, for which he was paying attention to the extraordinary difference in price margins between farmers and retailers.

The finance minister said that the government will soon launch the Kamyab Kissan program, saying that the Kamyab Kissan program is essential for grassroots development.

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