Islamabad, Oct 22 : Shaukat Tareen, the Pakistan Prime Minister's Financial Adviser, has said that his country needed five billion dollars from multilateral lenders and friendly countries to avert the impending balance of payments (BoP) crisis.
He said the PPP-led federal government had estimated that it would need an amount ranging between 3.4 and 4.5 billion dollars, but multilateral lenders had assessed the country would need five billion dollars to bridge the gap in the balance of payments.
"I never said that Pakistan is seeking 10-15 billion dollars assistance from multilateral lenders, including the IMF," the Dawn quoted him as saying.
Shaukat Tareen said that a positive assessment of Pakistan's economy by the International Monitory Fund (IMF) would spur international lenders to release funds to enable the country avoid a debt default.
He said the Dubai meeting with IMF officials was a normal consultation under Article IV, but it provided an opportunity to Pakistan to get its home-grown economic revival programme approved. He added that he was not attending the Dubai meting because it was a "normal consultation" between IMF representatives. The representatives would review Pakistan's economic indicators and prepare a report for approval by the IMF board, he said and added: "If the IMF endorses our home-grown economic strategy and establishes credit lines, Pakistan will go for the IMF programme on its own terms."
akistan's new programme seeking IMF endorsement will be primarily aimed at reducing poverty. Under the plan, apart from cash transfers to the poorest households, the government will provide health insurance, skills development opportunity for at least one member of every family and a suitable development support that will create temporary employment opportunities at the union council level.
The programme will be supported by initiatives to revitalise agriculture, make the industry competitive, meet growing energy needs, raise capital and finance for development, remove infrastructure bottlenecks through public-private partnership and reinvigorate the institutions of governance.