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Successive governments have always supported the ideal of granting State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) the independence and autonomy that it really deserves. The central bank is now about to get that independence free of unwarrranted political pressures anytime soon. The opposition parties must show some generosity by accepting government’s claim that it has finally extracted a “concession” from the International Monetary Fund (IMF) in relation to SBP’s autonomy. In other words, the government has the authority to appoint the board of the central bank and that board has the power to remove even the SBP governor. Terming the passage of this bill by the lower house of parliament “an anti-Pakistan move” is highly unfair on the part of the opposition. The opposition parties, in my view, are now therefore required to stop their opposition to the SBP bill that has been cleared by the National Assembly. They must help government ensure the passage of this bill by Senate.

Rehana Iftikhar (Lahore)

Copyright Business Recorder, 2022

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