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KARACHI: Pakistan’s total debt and liabilities (domestic and external) stocks surged to an all-time high level of Rs 51.724 trillion at the end of December 2021.

According to the State Bank of Pakistan (SBP), the federal government’s total debt stocks rose by 8 percent during the first half of this fiscal year (FY22). The central government’s domestic and external debt stocks increased by Rs 3.893 trillion to a new peak level of Rs 51.724 trillion in December 2021 compared to Rs 47.931 trillion in June 2021.

Economists said that continued borrowing from domestic and external resources for financing the fiscal deficit is increasing the country’s debt burden.

During the period under review, the major increase was recorded in the external debt, which rose by 20 percent. The federal government’s external debt surged to Rs 21 trillion in December 2021 up from Rs 17.846 trillion in June 2021, depicting an increase of Rs 3.518 trillion in the first half of this fiscal year.

External debt included Rs 14.814 trillion of government’ external debt, Rs 4.223 trillion non-government and Rs 1.188 trillion loan from the IMF.

Jul-Jan FY22: Foreign debt of $12.02bn incurred

Similarly, the upward trend was also seen in the federal government’s domestic debt, which went up by 2 percent or Rs482 billion to Rs 26.747 trillion in December 2021 up from Rs 26.265 trillion in June 2021. The total domestic debt stocks are composed of permanent debt, unfunded debt and floating debt. In addition, Public Sector Enterprises' debt stock rose by 5 percent to Rs 1.504 trillion. The country’s total liabilities rose by Rs 662 billion to Rs 2.944 trillion during the first half of FY22. US dollar, during the period average exchange rates stood at Rs 174.45.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2022

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