International Monetary Fund (IMF) and Pakistan are continuing discussions for a bailout package.
This was stated by Gerry Rice, Director Communication Department IMF during a media briefing.
Rice said that in October last year, during the Annual Meeting, Pakistan’s Finance Minister Asad Umar made a formal request for financial assistance from the IMF.
“Since then IMF have had a staff team visit Islamabad following that request. And where we stand is that IMF staff is continuing discussions with the Pakistani authorities, with our counterparts, toward reaching an understanding on policy priorities, on reforms to stabilize the economy and lay the foundations for sustainable and inclusive growth. So that is where we are. We’ve had the formal request for financial assistance, we followed up with that and the discussions continue”, Rice added.
During his last press conference, Rice said,
IMF will conduct a proper debt sustainability analysis of Pakistan before granting it a bailout package. Clearly, debt transparency is essential to conduct a proper analysis of the sustainability of a country’s debt. That is what the IMF does when we are going into a program with our member countries.
So that will be the case in Pakistan. But one of the things that we do in every program is to have a very detailed debt sustainability analysis to ensure that the country’s debt profile is sustainable. So that kind of information and that level of detail will be available at such times as we reach conclusions on the discussions and go forward with the program
However, Fitch Solutions stated in its latest report that the latest round of Chinese largesse has given Islamabad the confidence to snub the IMF’s more stringent requirements for obtaining funds.
However, should Pakistan experience acute signs of a currency crisis over the coming months, we would not be surprised to see talks between Pakistan and the IMF resume, it added.