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‘Exceptionally High’ Economic Risks in Pakistan, IMF Report Says

Lender says a week after approving a $3bn bailout package for Pakistan that ‘significant shocks’ have rocked its economy.

Islamabad, Pakistan – The International Monetary Fund (IMF) says Pakistan’s economic challenges are “complex and multifaceted” and the risks are “exceptionally high”.

In a report released on Tuesday, the global lender said Pakistan’s economy had been rocked by “significant shocks” over the past year, which included floods that caused damage of more than $30bn, the war in Ukraine and other “fiscal and external pressures”.

“Addressing them requires steadfast implementation of agreed policies, as well as continued financial support from external partners. Consistent and decisive implementation of program agreements will be essential to reduce risks and maintain macroeconomic stability,” the 120-page report added.

The IMF released the report a week after it approved a $3bn bailout programme, including the immediate disbursal of about $1.2bn to help stabilise the economy of the South Asian country with a population of 220 million people – the world’s fifth highest.

The lender imposed stringent conditions for the bailout, including a market-determined exchange rate for the Pakistani rupee, increased energy tariffs and other reforms in the energy sector.

The government has also told the IMF it will not introduce any new tax amnesty scheme or grant tax exemptions in the current fiscal year.

Source : aljazeera