IMF concerned at Pakistan’s weakening economy

ISLAMABAD: The International Monetary Fund (IMF) on Wednesday expressed concern over Pakistan’s weakening macroeconomic situation, including widening external and fiscal imbalances, reduction in foreign exchange reserves and emerging risks to economic and financial outlook.

The IMF executive board asked the government to immediately refocus on near-term policies to preserve macroeconomic stability and get back to fiscal discipline shown under the three-year $6.64 billion multi-tranche Extended Fund Facility (EFF) to minimise risks and economic distortions.

In its first post-programme monitoring (PPM) after the completion of fund programme in September last year, the IMF board also raised questions over the medium-term debt sustainability and called for additional revenue measures and containing expenditures.

The board expressed its anxiety over the deteriorating assessment that the country’s fiscal deficit was set to hit 5.5 per cent of GDP — almost Rs505bn or 1.4pc — higher than 4.1pc budgeted by the government and current account deficit to touch 4.8pc of GDP with the economic growth rate staying conservative at 5.6pc instead of budgeted 6pc.

Categories: Business

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