IMF mission reaches Pakistan to hold talks with govt

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ISLAMABAD: Pakistan and International Monetary Fund (IMF) will hold talks in the federal capital starting from today (Thursday) to review the economic challenges faced by the country.

The IMF mission headed by Herald Finger has arrived in Islamabad for a week-long visit.

Sources in the Ministry of Finance said the Pakistani team will include the finance secretary, governor State Bank of Pakistan and secretary for economic affairs.

“During the talks, Pakistan’s economic challenges will be discussed,” the sources added.

The IMF mission is also expected to hold talks with officials of the ministries of finance, trade, petroleum, investment and power.

They will also meet officials of the Federal Board of Revenue (FBR), sources said.

Regarding the IMF mission’s visit, Finance Minister Asad Umar during an interview last week said, “We are in discussion with them, but this is not to negotiate for a loan. Our purpose is to do our homework, in case we want to approach them at some stage.”

Umar also dispelled the notion that Pakistan is facing a financial emergency and said that there is no need to rush to the IMF for a bailout.

“Pakistan is not in an emergency situation that requires it to rush to the IMF to seek a bailout,” the finance minister said during an interview with Arab News.

“We have neither stopped imports nor imposed financial sanctions,” he continued.

However, the finance minister emphasised, “We need to take well-measured decisions. As a situation emerges, we take steps to manage it. We don’t want to take decisions in emergency.”

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