Pakistan cabinet resigns to reduce government expenditure

ISLAMABAD: Pakistan's federal cabinet resigned on Wednesday to allow Prime Minister Yusuf Raza Gilani to set up a smaller cabinet to tackle the country's economic crisis, The Nation newspaper reported.

The 62 ministers and deputy ministers resigned in the last meeting of the cabinet weeks after opposition parties demanded that Gilani trim the size of his cabinet, one of the largest in the world, to reduce government expenditure.

"Today's meeting is going to be the last meeting of the present cabinet. I can very proudly claim that your performance since 31 March, 2008 remained satisfactory given the very difficult circumstances under which we worked throughout this period," Gilani said.

The country's struggling economy was battered by floods last year, causing $10 billion in damage. Foreign aid has been slow in coming, because of concern about the government's ability to push through financial reform.

On February 4, Gilani was authorized to dissolve the cabinet by the main ruling party Pakistan People's Party.


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