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Tuesday May 15 2018

NA committee summons NAB chief over money laundering allegations against Nawaz

National Assembly's standing committee for Law and Justice on Tuesday, May 15, 2018, summoned the NAB Chairman Justice (retd) Javed Iqbal in the money laundering probe against Nawaz Sharif. Photo: Geo News file

ISLAMABAD: National Assembly's standing committee for Law and Justice on Tuesday summoned the NAB Chairman Justice (retd) Javed Iqbal in the money laundering probe against Nawaz Sharif.  

The National Accountability Bureau (NAB) chief was ordered to appear before the committee on May 16 to, in person, brief on the probe into allegations of money laundering against the deposed prime minister. 

The committee also ordered the NAB chief to be accompanied by officers involved in the probe. 

The standing Law and Justice committee had taken notice of a point of order raised by PML-N assembly member Rana Hayat. 

The probe

On May 8, the anti-graft body had ordered an inquiry against Nawaz and others for allegedly laundering $4.9 billion to India. According to a NAB statement, the chairman took notice of a media report which made the claims citing a World Bank report. 

However, the World Bank clarified that its report did not mention names or amounts, neither alleged money laundering.

SBP rejects $4.9 billion remittances to India

In a press release issued on September 21, 2016, the State Bank of Pakistan had rejected the estimates of $4.9 billion remittances from Pakistan to India.

“This number is given in Migration and Remittances Factbook 2016 prepared by the Global Knowledge Partnership on Migration and Development (KNOMAD).”

The State Bank press release added that the Factbook data on bilateral remittance flows were estimates and not the actual flows which are based on a number of assumptions about the migrant stock, per worker income, etc.

“The methodology used to estimate these numbers is based on a World Bank’s Working Paper by Ratha, Dilip, and William Shaw ( South-South migration and remittances. No. 102. World Bank Publications, 2007). This methodology has serious issues, particularly in case of Pakistan, as also acknowledged by the authors themselves stating that “Interpreting the meaning of migrant stocks also presents some difficulties. Pakistanis in India and Russians in Ukraine became migrants following partition of the original country.”

The State Bank thus concluded that the study was clearly flawed as the migrants at the time of Indo-Pak partition in 1947 had become Pakistani citizens. The State Bank categorically rejected such estimates as there were contrary to facts and did not make sense.

According to the State Bank, the actual Balance of Payments data showed that outflow of workers’ remittances from Pakistan to India was $116 thousands in FY16 and the inflows from India to Pakistan were $329 thousands. The value of Pakistan’s exports to India was $425 million, while imports from India amounted to $1,415 million during FY16.  


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