Karachi (October 20, 2018): Federal Finance Minister Asad Umer said on Saturday that this is 19th International Monetary Fund (IMF) program Pakistan is approaching and said this will be the last time the country seeks a bailout from the lender.
Addressing gathering in Pakistan Stock Exchange, Asad promised stock brokers to resolve all the outstanding issues of business community as early as possible.
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The finance minister clarified, “The media is portraying the country’s economy as collapsing but that is not the case. No alarm bells are ringing.”
However, Umar said, “This year there is a financing gap of $12 billion.”
“In the next seven to eight months, the US dollar will see a decrease of 26% to 27% against the Pakistani rupee,” he said while adding that “matters are coming under control”.“The current account deficit, which earlier rose from $2.5 billion to $18 billion, has started to decrease,” the finance minister added.
Umar further announced that measures were being taken to improve the stock exchange and said, “There is astounding growth in the stock market and efforts should continue for better results.”
“Doing business in Pakistan has become very expensive,” he said while adding that “the environment for investment and business needs to be improved”. He added, “We will also work on improving the capital market.”
Stating that investment is low in the country owing to taxation and that “needs to be fixed”, the finance minister continued, “The market needs to be regulated but not over-regulated.”The finance minister added, “Ups and downs are common in businesses.”
Asserting that one should spend within their limits, Umar said, “I have to save 21 million Pakistanis.”
He said that the economic indicators have now started moving in the right direction as a result of steps taken by the government.
He said that exports and the remittances are witnessing healthy trend.
The Finance Minister said that measures are being taken to bring improvement in the capital market.Asad Umar said that several bail out packages from the IMF were taken in the past. However, he expressed the confidence that the one being taken by the incumbent government will be the last one from the international lender.