IMF and Pakistan reach agreement; Islamabad to get $700m
ISLAMABAD – Prime Minister Anwaar ul Haq Kakar on Wednesday launched a dossier on the exploitation of religious minorities in India.
Speaking in a seminar titled ‘Margalla Dialogue’ in a policy research institute in Islamabad, Kakar said that India is responsible for hostility and instability in the region.
The dossier said that India is involved in brutality towards minorities since 2014. As many as 294 incidents of hatred were reported alone in 2021.
The dossier added that the historical mosques are under attack and hundreds of churches were put on fire in Manipur state of India. As many as 24,496 religious sites were taken over by the government of India in Occupied Kashmir.
The dossier urged the international powers to force India to stop the human rights violations.
“Pakistan is emerging as a responsible state and we’ll continue playing our role for the international peace,” said PM Kakar.
Talking about the climate change, caretaker prime minister said that it is a global challenge and we need a robust collaboration to fight it.
“The world powers must play their role to resolve the Kashmir and Palestine issues,” Kakar said. He added that Israel is committing genocide in Palestine by killing the innocent children.
The justice must be done with the Palestinians, PM said.
Pakistan and the International Monetary Fund (IMF) have reached an agreement for the release of the second tranche under the Standby Arrangement (SBA),
“Pakistan has met all the IMF targets. It has adjusted electricity and gas tariff prices in a timely manner,” the Fund said.
“Economic recovery under the IMF programme is ongoing and implementation of the federal budget has brought continuity in the policies,” IMF said.
The IMF staff and the Pakistani authorities reached a staff-level agreement on the first review under Pakistan’s Stand-By Arrangement (SBA), subject to approval by the IMF’s Executive Board. Upon approval, Pakistan will have access to $700 million
The agreement supports the authorities’ commitment to advance the planned fiscal consolidation, accelerate cost-reducing reforms in the energy sector, complete the return to a market-determined exchange rate, and pursue state-owned enterprise and governance reforms to attract investment and support job creation while continuing to strengthen social assistance.
In a statement, IMF team head Nathan Porter said: “The IMF team has reached a staff-level agreement (SLA) with the Pakistani authorities on the first review of their stabilisation programme supported by the IMF’s $3 billion
The statement added: “Anchored by the stabilization policies under the SBA, a nascent recovery is underway, buoyed by international partners’ support and signs of improved confidence.
“The steadfast execution of the FY24 budget, continued adjustment of energy prices, and renewed flows into the foreign exchange (FX) market have lessened fiscal and external pressures. Inflation is expected to decline over the coming months amid receding supply constraints and modest demand.
“However, Pakistan remains susceptible to significant external risks, including the intensification of geopolitical tensions, resurgent commodity prices, and the further tightening in global financial conditions. Efforts to build resilience need to continue.
“In this regard, strengthening macroeconomic sustainability and laying the conditions for balanced growth are key priorities under the SBA. The authorities’ policy priorities include:
“Continued fiscal consolidation to reduce public debt, while protecting development needs. The authorities are determined to achieve a primary surplus of at least 0.4 per cent of GDP in FY24, underpinned by federal and provincial government spending restraint and improved revenue performance supported, if necessary, by contingent measures. The authorities are building capacity to expand the tax base and raise revenue mobilization and are committed to improving the quality of public investment and spending.”