Shahbaz Blames Imran for the Delay in the IMF Deal

Pakistan seeks global support to tackle the economic crisis, blames opposition for obstructing IMF deal.

Pakistan’s Prime Minister Shahbaz Sharif has accused opposition leader Imran Khan of obstructing the country’s deal with the International Monetary Fund (IMF), which has been delayed.

Sharif claimed that Khan’s “plan to foment instability” in the nation included the protests organised by the former ruling party in a statement released by the Prime Minister’s office on Saturday. Sharif claimed that Khan had left the IMF programme and was now fighting the legal system, alleging that Khan did not want the masses to be lifted out of poverty.

Moreover, Foreign Minister Bilawal Bhutto-Zardari has requested assistance from global financial institutions to address Pakistan’s economic woes, which he referred to as “nothing short of a disaster”.

Bhutto-Zardari stated that Pakistan was experiencing “a perfect storm of crises” and needed assistance to get through it while speaking at a news briefing in New York. Two UN meetings on Muslim women and Islamophobia were being presided over by the foreign minister while he was in New York.

According to Bhutto-Zardari, Pakistan was facing a number of uncontrollable issues, such as the COVID-19 pandemic’s economic effects and the fall of an economically viable nation on its border in Kabul.

He also mentioned the devastating effects of floods on the nation, the war in Ukraine, which has had a particularly large impact on developing nations, shortages of food and energy, and extremely high inflation. The economy has also been impacted by terrorist activity in Peshawar and Karachi.

Bhutto-Zardari continued by pointing out that Pakistan’s economic problems were also significantly influenced by the ongoing negotiations with the IMF, as the uncertainty surrounding the negotiations had an impact on the country’s economy. To help Pakistan’s poorest and weakest citizens, he pleaded with the world’s financial institutions to work together effectively.

An official statement from Washington revealed that the Biden administration has suggested doubling the economic support fund to Pakistan for fiscal year 2024 to $82 million as the foreign minister made his appeal for international assistance.

The support will increase economic growth in the private sector, support democratic institutions, and advance gender equality and women’s empowerment. The money can also be used to diversify the country’s energy supply, aid in the flood recovery, and strengthen emergency preparedness.

Pakistan may also receive $17 million for drug enforcement and control, another $3.5 million for international military education and training programmes, in addition to the economic assistance. Additionally, Pakistan has been offered $32 million from a global health programme by the US administration.

In order to put the Pakistani people back on a sustainable economic path, the United States has promised to cooperate with Islamabad. The US reaffirmed its commitment to helping Pakistan advance its reform agenda with the IMF on Thursday, and Pakistan was urged to keep doing so.

Written by Imad Khan

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