IMF hopes govt efforts will help revive economy
The IMF mission led by Harald Finger visited Minister for Planning, Development and Reform Makhdoom Khusro Bakhtiar here on Wednesday. The mission appreciated the mega project of China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) for increasing energy production in its initial phase and said it would also aid in achieving sustained economic growth.
During the meeting, the planning minister said the mega project had now entered into its second phase with focus on industrialisation, socio-economic initiatives and joint ventures especially in agriculture sector to increase productivity as well as improve irrigation network system.
“CPEC in its first phase helped a great deal in boosting power generation,” noted Bakhtiar, adding the economic objectives of the government were to protect and provide relief to the marginalised segments of society by prioritising focus on human resource development, social security and job creation.
He also apprised the mission that keeping in view the economic situation the Public Sector Development Programme (PSDP) had been rationalised and the throw forward liability of PSDP was brought down to a manageable level.
The federal minister further noted the government has inherited a fragile economy but has already taken a number of corrective measures to revive the national economy and put it on path to sustained growth.
“Emphasis is being laid on attracting investments in areas where it could lead to direct impact on exports or reducing the import bill,” he said, further informing the mission that new ways of financing were also being explored.
Secretary Planning Zafar Hasan, Project Director CPEC Hassan Daud Butt and senior officials of the ministry were also present in the meeting.
Meanwhile, Finance Minister Asad Umar while talking to a private news channel said government was going to avail 19th programme from the IMF, which would be its last. He said talks with an IMF delegation were underway and the situation would be clearer in the next few days.
However, Umar ruled out the perception of the government delaying in making a decision to approach the IMF.