Pakistan’s future is ‘very bright’: IMF officials laud improvement in economic situation

  • It's one of the most important countries in the region and in the world. Pakistanis deserve much more,' says Bahador Bijani, IMF Executive Director
Published December 7, 2023

Bahador Bijani, an Executive Director at the International Monetary Fund (IMF), has noted an overall improvement in the economic situation in the country, stating that “Pakistani authorities have delivered”.

The remarks were made by the IMF official during an event hosted by Masood Khan, Ambassador of Pakistan to US, for representatives of International Financial Institutions (IFIs) including the IMF, International Finance Corporation (IFC), World Bank, and Multilateral Investment Guarantee Agency (MIGA), at Pakistan House, read a statement published by the Press Information Department (PID) on Thursday.

“I think the future for Pakistan is very bright,” said Bijani. “Pakistan is not just any country. It’s one of the most important countries in the region and in the world. Pakistanis deserve much more,” he observed.

The remarks come as the South Asian country, which is operating under a caretaker government, remains in an IMF program.

Meanwhile, addressing a gathering of over 40 guests from the IFIs, Nathan Porter, IMF Mission Chief to Pakistan, expressed satisfaction over the recently concluded staff-level agreement.

As per the statement, Porter said that the actions and policies of the current interim government reflected its commitment to steer the country towards stabilization.

“With that base, hopefully, we can build on and be able to move forward to reforms to build a stronger, prosperous and inclusive Pakistan,” Porter said.

The IMF representative also appreciated the cooperation and the policies pursued by the State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) for ensuring fiscal stability in the country, read the statement.

Speaking on the occasion, Athanasios Arvanitis, Deputy Director Middle East and Central Asia Department IMF, expressed the hope that the elections in Pakistan, which are scheduled to be held in February next year, will usher in reforms that the country needs to make progress.

Similar sentiments were expressed by Syed Ali Abbas, Advisor Mission Chief UK, European Department IMF, hoped that with the successful completion of electoral process in Pakistan, the country would move towards a long-term and more durable approach.

Meanwhile, Ambassador Masood Khan observed that the digitisation of Pakistan’s economy was creating new opportunities in the country for its youth and professionals taking the lead role in steering the country towards a bright future.

“We are a nation of talented people. If you can make it, Pakistan will also make it,” observed the envoy.

Earlier this month, Managing Director (MD) IMF, Kristalina Georgieva lauded the Pakistani government for “maintaining economic stability and timely implementation of reforms”.


In July, Pakistan inked a last-minute Stand-By Arrangement (SBA) with the Washington-based lender amid default fears. Under the $3 billion SBA program, Pakistan received $1.2 billion from the IMF as the first tranche in July.

The nine-month agreement then paved the way for inflows from multilateral and bilateral partners including Saudi Arabia, UAE, and World Bank, providing a cushion to the depleting foreign exchange reserves position.

The IMF programme also gave some breathing room to Pakistan’s economy that has been struggling with a boom-and-bust cycle for decades in the absence of meaningful structural reforms.

Last month, IMF staff and Pakistani authorities reached a staff-level agreement on the first review of the SBA program. The government expects approval from the IMF’s executive board in December.


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KU Dec 07, 2023 04:47pm
We, the people think otherwise in our present misery. Given our usual suspects reputation in assemblies, the future seems to be pure pain.
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Usman Dec 07, 2023 05:30pm
The only difference now and in the past are that no political party has the mandate so no opposition is trying to gain sympathy and votes. Secondly no protests as Imran is behind the bar as a result no political chaos. Wish we had followed IMF programmes 20 years back we would not be in the mess we are now. I believe we should extend the caretake setup for 2.5 years and than have elections and make sure no corrupt politican gets a chance to be elected.enough of the misery this nation has faced.
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Az_Iz Dec 07, 2023 05:53pm
There is no doubt about it. Just a few months ago, the country was facing default. With little bit of trying, things are in much better shape. The country can build from here. It does earn about $70 billion in exports and remittances. It should use it appropriately. It should let go of the consumption cycle, and instead spend more of what it earns to make the economy productive.
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Az_Iz Dec 07, 2023 06:00pm
The country is ready to import cheese worth $1 billion every year, but does not have money to build dams. In India 50% of electricity is used for industries and 25% for residential use. In Pakistan 50% is residential use, and 25% is industry. People want retail stores to be open past midnight, something that does not happen anywhere else. Almost $4 billion is used in importing cooking oil, so dishes soaking in inch deep oil can be prepared. Instead of consumption, if there is more savings , which has always been lesser than other countries at similar stages of devevelopment, and earnings are spent wisely, the country can do a lot better.
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Asif Dec 07, 2023 06:09pm
From January to June we did everything but couldn’t get staff level agreement with IMF , yet somehow manage to get SBA . Now despite staff level agreement and all praise from the staff we are still not on IMF board agenda .
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Amjad Dec 07, 2023 06:11pm
Good development
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Maqbool Dec 07, 2023 07:40pm
All that praise, then why isn’t Pakistan on any IMF board meeting Agenda as yet ?
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Maqbool Dec 07, 2023 07:42pm
@Az_Iz, lots seems our rulers can’t do without huge VIP imported cars and free electricity and petrol allowances .
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mairaj Dec 07, 2023 08:06pm
@KU, majority of your girls can't read or write'; 40% of the population is iliterate: pakistan has no real products to sell; the social system is one-sided and gender biased; and the talented people are leaving for free-er lands with better opportunities. Thank Allah that this country hasnt become syria or afghanistan. Literally, he is keeping it float. But Pakistanis will choose cultural / caste "honor" and poverty over progress :).
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Hilarious Dec 08, 2023 01:39pm
@mairaj, that last sentence hit the nail on the head, for pretty much everything wrong with Pakistan.
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