Wednesday, July 27, 2022
Finance Minister Miftah Ismail has said that there is no risk of Pakistan defaulting anymore and policymakers are well aware of it.
The statement came during a conversation with Islamabad-based policy think-tank Tabadlab CEO Mosharraf Zaidi.
As the pressure on the government increases with the local currency sinking against the dollar amid political instability, the finance minister claimed that the pressure on the rupee will “vanish” soon and the dollar inflow to Pakistan will be higher than the outflow, which will also stablise the exchange rate.
He went on to say that the government will soon make a policy plan and there will be an "organic" drop in imports and surge in exports within three months.
He, however, said that “it’s no fun going to the world, to the International Monetary Fund (IMF), to the Chinese, to the Saudis, asking for money."
Miftah said that the IMF loan influx will be completed within weeks.
“There’s no prior action that’s left really. The only thing is that they have a vacation for the (IMF) directors from August 1 to 15. That’s why the meeting is a little later than I would’ve liked," he clarified.
Miftah further stated that Pakistani authorities had requested a "friendly country" to shore up foreign exchange reserves through dollar-denominated deposits but the latter rejected the idea, saying that the deposits have never been returned.
He said that this unnamed country showed willingness on shareholding in state-owned companies with tradeable shares on the stock exchange to let Pakistan raise dollars by repurchasing the same shareholding after a certain period of time but at 5% higher rates.
The minister said that the "friendly country" tried to help Pakistan and is giving a great deal, adding that "there’s not even (a question of) price discovery."