Extending support to Pakistan in getting the funds, Dr. Singh said, "I wish the new democratic government in Pakistan well. We would like them to succeed. Pakistan is in serious difficulties. It is going to the IMF. We will support Pakistan getting help from the IMF." The assurance given by Dr. Singh during a news conference on board his special aircraft on his way back to New Delhi from China is seen as another confidence building measure to foster ties between the two countries. Pakistan requires ten billion dollars to 15 billion dollars of support from foreign lenders to avert a balance of payments crisis and undertake economic adjustments.
The seven-month-old civilian government now running Pakistan after more than eight years of rule under former army chief Pervez Musharraf has been reluctant to go to the IMF.
But the severity of its balance of payments crisis appeared to leave it with little option. The country's foreign currency reserves have been falling at a rate of nearly one billion dollars a month, and the central bank has barely enough to cover six weeks of imports.