ISLAMABAD: Minister of State for Finance, Aisha Ghaus Pasha has said that the government is holding virtual discussions with the International Monetary Fund (IMF) on a regular basis.
Talking to media after the Senate Standing Committee on Finance meeting, she said that a day ahead of the IMF going on official winter holidays, a virtual meeting was held with the Fund.
She added that the country would not default as US$3 billion from Saudi Arabia would hopefully materialise as things are in the process and discussions with the Fund are also progressing.
Additionally, she said that discussions for rollover and other issues are also being held with China.
She said that as soon as the winter holidays of the IMF will end, discussions would be restarted with them as clarity on some issues was achieved during the virtual meetings.
Pakistan is waiting for 9th January’s Geneva donor conference where the IMF would also be present and the finance minister would hold a meeting with the IMF that would lead to more clarity.
The minister said that Pakistan would be in a better position after the donors’ conference to know how much funds would be available to Pakistan and in which direction it would have to move.
Replying to yet another question, State Minister for Finance said that multilaterals have already committed some funds besides repurposing and Pakistan is expecting that the global community would realise and compensate the countries like Pakistan whose contribution to climate change is not very high but they are among those most affected.
She said that Pakistan would honour its obligations as stated by the finance minister repeatedly. About the payment of $1.1 billion to some Gulf banks in the next month of January 2023, she said that Pakistan would honour its obligations and there is no issue of reserves as some are in the pipeline.
Responding to a question about the delay in the inflows from Saudi Arabia, she said that there was no as such delay and – as $3 billion indicated by the finance minister from Saudi Arabia – would materialise soon as things in this regard are in process.
She added that discussions with China are also being held.
The State Minister for Finance added that budgeted external financing is expected to be materialised in the second half of the ongoing fiscal year that would lead to improvement in the external account.
Copyright Business Recorder, 2022