Government obtains $2,452 million loans, grants in four months

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ISLAMABAD: The government has obtained $2,452 billion in loans and grants from commercial banks and multilateral or bilateral institutions during the first four months of the current fiscal year 2017-18.

Documents available with Pakistan Today indicate that the government has borrowed $853.53 million in October out of the total $2,452 million loans and grants.

The finance ministry had estimated in budget 2017-18 that government will borrow $7,692 million from commercial banks and multilateral and bilateral institutions. Pakistan has also received $138.95 million grants in first four months of the current year from Asian Development Bank (ADB), International Bank for Reconstruction and Development (IBRD), the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), Islamic Development Bank, USA, Germany, UK and Japan.

The government expected to get $401 million grant from commercial banks and multilateral or bilateral institutions during the current fiscal year.

The grants and loans taken from commercial banks and multilateral institutions recorded $1,861.79 million in first four months. The government managed to get $267 million from Citibank, $ 255 million from AG, UBL, ABL, $500 from China ICBC, $160.89 million from  ADB, $7.86 million from AIIB ,$77.51 million from IBRD, $76.81 million from IDA, $455.36 million IDB(ST), $ 0.40 million from UNHCR, $53.84 million from  IDB, $3.43 million from IFAD and $3.69 million from  OPEC Fund.

The government got these loans for the social protection development, high way investment, Peshawar Sustainable Bus Rapid Train Project, Shorkot to Khanewal Motorway and Mohmand Dam. Furthermore, it was also obtained for Afghan refugees and Energy Efficient Investment Programme, documents stated.

On a bilateral basis, the government has loaned $417.21 million from China, $0.97 million from France and $22 million from the USA. Documents further mentioned that the government has taken $11.17 million from Germany, $1.53 million from Kuwait and $81.75 million from the UK during the first four months of the current year.

Furthermore, $33.17 million from Japan and $22.50 million grants and loans have also been received from Saudi Arabia.

An official while talking to Pakistan Today said that the government is receiving all these loan and grants but the finance ministry is not using it properly. These loans and grants have been used for running the day to day matters of the country, he added.

Pakistan’s external public debt stood at $62.5 billion while independent economists reported the total external debt and liabilities amounted to $82.7 billion by the end June 2017. External public debt increased from $48.1 billion to $62.5 billion – by $14.4 billion – while non-public debt rose by $7.3 billion.

Spokesperson of the finance ministry while talking to Pakistan Today said that he doesn’t know the details of the debt taken in four months. The debt management wing of the finance ministry deals with this issue, he added.