Pakistani delegation led by Minister of State for Finance Aisha Ghaus Pasha would be leaving for Doha today (Tuesday) for crucial talks with the International Monetary Fund staff mission for the revival of the Extended Fund Facility Program.
Sources said that the State Minister would be accompanied by Secretary Finance, Additional Secretary Finance, Chairman Federal Board of Revenue (FBR), Acting Governor State Bank of Pakistan (SBP), while Finance Minister Mitfah Ismail would fly to Doha on Wednesday to join them in the talks with the IMF mission.
A statement issued by the IMF on April 24, 2022, after a discussion with the Finance Minister Miftah Ismail in the US, stated that “we agreed that prompt action is needed to reverse the unfunded subsidies which have slowed discussions for the 7th review”.
The government has not so far reversed the unfunded subsidies as the Finance Minister on Sunday said that the government has decided not to increase the petroleum prices for now but stated that the adjustment in prices is inevitable as the previous government had not provided funds for these subsidies.
He said that he would try to seek leniency or a middle way on petroleum prices from the Fund, he added.
It is pertinent to mention here that Pakistan has also requested the IMF to extend the EFF arrangement through June 2023 which was welcomed by the IMF.
Earlier, it was reported that Pakistan’s three close allies Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates and China declined to financially support Pakistan without bringing the IMF on board.
Shehbaz Sharif’s government has also requested Saudi Arabia to extend the maturity of the $3 billion debt in the coming December while Pakistan is awaiting a rollover of $2.3 billion in Chinese commercial loans.