- Newly-appointed Advisor to Prime Minister on Finance and Revenue Shaukat Tarin urges public to give govt time to deliver results
Newly-appointed Advisor to Prime Minister on Finance and Revenue Shaukat Tarin insisted that Pakistan's talks with the International Monetary Fund (IMF) have not failed, while accepting that rising inflation is an issue in the country.
Addressing a ceremony arranged by the Pakistan government on Roshan Digital Accounts (RDA) for Overseas Pakistanis in New York, the ex-banker said that inflation could not be controlled without increasing exports.
Tarin, currently on a visit to the United States to attend the IMF/World Bank annual meetings and hold policy-level talks on the pending review of the Extended Fund Facility (EFF), termed the impression of failure of talks with IMF as wrong and said that talks are going on in Washington.
Contingent on a successful review, the IMF would release a $1-billion tranche for Pakistan.
Tarin's statement comes after a spokesperson of the Ministry of Finance also refuted media reports about failure of the talks with IMF and clarified that they would resume today (Monday) uninterrupted.
"There is no truth in the news of the failure of talks with the IMF. The talks will resume on Monday uninterrupted from where they were on Friday," a Finance Ministry spokesman said in a statement on Sunday.
The spokesman further stated that there is no deadline for the talks to end, adding that the dialogue with the IMF would continue till "success". He further stated that Tarin and his team are still in Washington for the talks.
“Negotiations between Pakistan and IMF are moving forward positively. Secretary Finance Division is leading the talks in Washington DC while the technical teams of both sides are continuing detailed discussions in virtual format after exchange of relevant data sets. No timeframe was set at any stage for conclusion of the talks,” added the Finance Ministry statement.
Meanwhile, Advisor to PM said that the economy is improving, and urged the public to give the government some time, expressing optimism that his team will deliver results.
Criticism on the government has grown in recent months as the rupee hit a record low, falling nearly 11% in less than five months amid a widening current account deficit.
Additionally, inflation readings have picked up, forcing the central bank to hike the interest rate by 25 basis points, the first such increase in over two years. This weekend, the government also raised petrol prices by as much as 8%, inviting severe criticism from the opposition as well as the public.