Govt committed to IMF programme: Shaukat Tarin

Ashraf Malkham
Web Desk
Govt committed to IMF programme: Shaukat Tarin

  • Finance minister says reforms are being carried out in the power sector to address circular debt issue.
  • The implementation of track-and-trace for tobacco will commence from October 1, Tarin informed IMF country officials.
  • Pakistan and IMF will begin staff-level discussions from October 4.

ISLAMABAD: Federal Minister for Finance Shaukat Tarin on Monday said the government is committed to the International Monetary Fund (IMF) programme and hopes to successfully complete the upcoming review as well as Article IV consultations.

During a meeting with the nominated resident representative of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) Esther Perez Ruiz and outgoing representative of IMF Teresa Sanchez, the minister apprised that the implementation of track-and-trace programme for tobacco is being started from October 1, 2021. 

"This is also one of the requirements under the IMF Extended Fund Facility (EFF) programme," he mentioned.

Shedding light on the power sector issue, Tarin said reforms are being carried out in the power sector to address the circular debt problem.  

"Pakistan is firmly committed to pursue an all-inclusive and sustainable economic growth with key focus on bottom-up approach to uplift marginalised segments of the society," he noted. 

"The government intends to engage development partners to broaden economic development through fiscal consolidation and prudent economic measures amid COVID-19 pandemic and in post COVID-19 scenario," he added.

The finance minister underlined the key initiatives of the government to provide maximum relief to the masses. 

"The government is taking a range of administrative, policy and relief measures to absorb the upward pressure on prices of basic food commodities due to the pandemic," he said, adding that the government has adopted a multi-pronged strategy to enhance revenue collection and to broaden the existing tax base. 

During the meeting Tarin felicitated the nominated resident representative and expressed his best wishes for her upcoming assignment beginning in November, 2021.

The new representative of IMF commended Pakistan's efforts in managing the spread of the virus through a series of smart and targeted lockdowns to strike a balance between lives and livelihoods. 

According to The Express Tribune, Pakistan and the IMF will begin staff-level discussions from October 4 to finalise issues including an increase in electricity tariffs and approval of the State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) Amendment Bill 2021 by the Parliament.

The successful conclusion of the talks would facilitate immediate disbursements of $1 billion by the IMF and another $1.6 billion by the Asian Development Bank ($600 million) and the World Bank ($1 billion) over the course of the current fiscal year.

Earlier, Tarin had announced that he would visit Washington from October 11 to 17 to hold talks with the top IMF management on sidelines of the annual meetings.