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ISLAMABAD: Former Federal Finance Minister and Planning and Development Asad Umar of Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) has expressed serious concern over rapid slide in foreign exchange reserves and said that the country’s economic situation is becoming grim with every passing day.

Asad Umar has cautioned that the situation of Pakistan is only weeks away from the Sri Lankan economic situation, lamenting that Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif lacks courage to take any decision.

Speaking at a press conference here Sunday, along with Omer Ayub Khan and other PTI leaders, Asad Umar said that first nine months of the ongoing fiscal year economic numbers reflected a considerable increase in the income of farmers as supportive policies during the PTI government enabled them to increase production of major crops and as a result production cotton was up by 18.6 percent over last year, sugarcane production up by 6 percent more than last year and rice crop was more than 9 million tons.

He said that the crop of maize and potato has also increased to a record level and at a time when the whole world is in the grip of inflation, there was record production of five major crops in Pakistan.

He said that latest data shows that large scale manufacturing also grew by 10.4 per cent, while exports increased by 26 percent this year, primarily because of great attention paid to the export sector by the former Prime Minister Imran Khan.

Umar said that electricity generation was 10 percent higher this year compared to last year while sale of petroleum products also increased by 17 percent compared to last year, showing that the economic wheel in the country was moving fast.

Imran says he warned economy would 'go into a tailspin' if his govt was ousted

Former finance and planning minister further maintained that these numbers are indicative that the economic growth would be more that 5.6 percent this year as well and this would be for the first time after 15 years, that GDP growth would be over 5 percent for the second consecutive year.

He said that when the economy was growing a no-confidence motion was brought and after the no-confidence motion, the foreign exchange reserves decreased sharply by more than $6 billion and this has been the reason that rupee was sliding against the US dollar continuously since the present government came to power.

He said that in the opposition, the leaders of present government were making big speeches about competence of former prime minister when he tried to save them from inflation caused by price hike of commodities in the global market. He said that they have promised to the people to reduce the flour prices and stated that Finance Minister Miftah Ismail is on record stating that who can afford petrol at Rs 137 per litre.

He said that with fast depleting foreign exchange reserves, this government is unable to ensure foreign inflows.

He said that the country is fast moving towards Sri Lanka like situation apparently in weeks and not in months but the government lacks power to make decision and immediate election is only way forward from this crisis.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2022

Comments

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Kashif ALI May 16, 2022 02:07pm
Shame on this former Corporate Executive!!! He should be playing his political role with professional prudence but instead he has resorted to dirty mean political statements. He should keep Pakistan over and above his personal political affiliations and vendettas. A very mean example of how very well educated Pakistanis have contributed to the pathetic political and economic conditions of this country. SHAME ON SUCH EDUCATED CLASS!!!! He is a failed Finance minister. It will not be surprising if his case study should be taught in business schools as how a corporate executive proved to be an immense failure in managing public finances. If he can't talk professionally, there is no need for him to talk politically.
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Syed Arif Hussain Zahidi May 16, 2022 02:09pm
Pti should have taken that medal also. Congratulations. You have another opportunity, you can create chaos and anarchy during your long march. SHAMELESS CHARACTERS.
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