Pakistan gets $4.5bn facility for oil, LNG imports

Pakistan has secured a $4.5 billion worth of three-year trade financing facility from Jeddah-based Islamic Trade Finance Corporation (ITFC) to cover import cost of crude, petroleum products and liquefied natural gas (LNG).

According to a report by Dawn, a formal financing framework agreement on the arrangement would be signed early next week.

The funds would be utilised under Annual Financing Plan of roughly $1.5bn each. This trade financing arrangement is in addition to about $531 million already signed by Ministry of Economic Affairs with Saudi Fund for Development (SFD) for project financing of Mohmand dam, a couple of coal based projects besides a few hydropower projects including two in Azad Kashmir.

The ITFC’s financing would be utilised over three years (2021-23) by Pak-Arab Refinery Ltd (Parco), Pakistan State Oil (PSO) and Pakistan LNG Ltd (PLL) for import of crude oil, refined petroleum pro­ducts and LNG and help augment the country’s foreign currency reserves and provide resources to meet the oil import bill.

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The facility is expected to provide relief in oil and gas import bill and ease pressure on foreign exchange reserves. Under the facility, funds do not come into Pakistan’s account but ease pressure on foreign exchange reserves. These funds would be used for financing of letters of credit for oil and LNG imports by PSO, Parco and PLL.

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