AIRLINK 74.00 Decreased By ▼ -0.25 (-0.34%)
BOP 5.14 Increased By ▲ 0.09 (1.78%)
CNERGY 4.55 Increased By ▲ 0.13 (2.94%)
DFML 37.15 Increased By ▲ 1.31 (3.66%)
DGKC 89.90 Increased By ▲ 1.90 (2.16%)
FCCL 22.40 Increased By ▲ 0.20 (0.9%)
FFBL 33.03 Increased By ▲ 0.31 (0.95%)
FFL 9.75 Decreased By ▼ -0.04 (-0.41%)
GGL 10.75 Decreased By ▼ -0.05 (-0.46%)
HBL 115.50 Decreased By ▼ -0.40 (-0.35%)
HUBC 137.10 Increased By ▲ 1.26 (0.93%)
HUMNL 9.95 Increased By ▲ 0.11 (1.12%)
KEL 4.60 Decreased By ▼ -0.01 (-0.22%)
KOSM 4.83 Increased By ▲ 0.17 (3.65%)
MLCF 39.75 Decreased By ▼ -0.13 (-0.33%)
OGDC 138.20 Increased By ▲ 0.30 (0.22%)
PAEL 27.00 Increased By ▲ 0.57 (2.16%)
PIAA 24.24 Decreased By ▼ -2.04 (-7.76%)
PIBTL 6.74 Decreased By ▼ -0.02 (-0.3%)
PPL 123.62 Increased By ▲ 0.72 (0.59%)
PRL 27.40 Increased By ▲ 0.71 (2.66%)
PTC 13.90 Decreased By ▼ -0.10 (-0.71%)
SEARL 61.75 Increased By ▲ 3.05 (5.2%)
SNGP 70.15 Decreased By ▼ -0.25 (-0.36%)
SSGC 10.52 Increased By ▲ 0.16 (1.54%)
TELE 8.57 Increased By ▲ 0.01 (0.12%)
TPLP 11.10 Decreased By ▼ -0.28 (-2.46%)
TRG 64.02 Decreased By ▼ -0.21 (-0.33%)
UNITY 26.76 Increased By ▲ 0.71 (2.73%)
WTL 1.38 No Change ▼ 0.00 (0%)
BR100 7,874 Increased By 36.2 (0.46%)
BR30 25,596 Increased By 136 (0.53%)
KSE100 75,342 Increased By 411.7 (0.55%)
KSE30 24,214 Increased By 68.6 (0.28%)

ISLAMABAD: In the context of a forthcoming IMF program and upcoming budget for FY 2024-2035, economic minds on Tuesday supported economic stabilisation reforms, promotion of balanced recovery and inclusive growth without burdening the people.

This was the crux of discussion amongst leading national and international policy experts who spoke at a high-level panel discussion on national economic reforms organised by UNDP, SDPI, and the World Bank as part of ‘Prosperity for Pakistan initiative’.

Moderated by senior economic journalist, Khurram Hussain, the panel discussion featured Dr Shamshad Akhtar, former Caretaker Minister for Finance and Revenue; Kanni Wignaraja, UN Assistant Secretary-General, UNDP Administrator and Regional Director for Asia-Pacific; Tobias Akhtar Haque, Lead Country Economist and Acting Country Director, World Bank Pakistan and Dr Abid Suleri, Executive Director, SDPI.

Dr Shamshad Akhtar highlighted the need for a whole-of-government approach for reforms. “Macroeconomic stability has to be our religion,” she argued. “We have to make sure that it is adequate to get us out of the low and volatile growth trap, and it should be re-enforced by bold structural reforms. The single most important obsession the country should have is revenue enhancement and export earnings.”

UNDP Regional Director, Kanni Wignaraja highlighted the findings of UNDP’s 2023 Integrated SDG Insights Report for Pakistan showing that the country is on track to achieve only 35 out of 169 SDG targets. “The road to Agenda 2030 will be long and tough,” she said.

FBR begins budget preparation exercise for FY2024-25

“Achieving an ambitious growth target will require steadfast political will, consistency in policy reforms, and innovative policy solutions with an eye toward enhancing productivity, revenue, and financing. Any country where half the population does not have the same opportunity cannot be a prosperous country,” said the speaker.

World Bank’s Tobias Haque identified regressive subsidies in energy, fertiliser, and gas sectors and the fiscal cost of state-owned enterprises contributing to fiscal pressures in Pakistan. “The burden of reforms should be spread more broadly and further measures to increase tax returns should be targeted at the top of the income distribution,” he advised.

Addressing climate vulnerability and climate financing, Dr Abid Suleri of SDPI stated: “more than climate vulnerability, Pakistan’s negotiations on climate financing should be cantered around the private sector climate equity and community response in the wake of 2022 floods.”

Earlier at the event, UNDP Pakistan Resident Representative welcomed the participants and guests. “We anticipate that stabilisation policies will continue over the next 3-5 years, and to be successful, these policies need to be people-centric and address economic injustice,” he said.

The participants agreed that the government needs to balance economic recovery with stabilisation, to create income and livelihood opportunities for the people, and discussed the National Economic Recovery Plan focused on the following reforms: (i) ensuring solvency, revenue and fiscal sustainability; (ii) bending the political economy of Pakistan toward economic justice and good governance;(iii) reducing deficit through inclusive growth and effective import-export management; (iv) transitioning to green economy; and (vi) ensuring social protection and social safety nets to minimize the adverse impact of structural reforms on the most vulnerable.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2024


Comments are closed.