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IMF team to visit Pakistan this week

 

Photo: Reuters

A team of the International Monetary Fund will visit Pakistan this week, SAMAA TV reported on Monday.

The team is expected to hold meetings with Finance Minister Asad Umar.

The delegation is expected to be briefed on the economic situation. It will be apprised of the changes in the federal budget.

The visit can have implications as Pakistan has yet to take a decision over a bailout given its balance-of-payments crisis.

“We are in discussion with them [global monetary organisation], but this is not to negotiate for a loan. Our purpose is to do our homework, in case we want to approach them at some stage,” the minister said in an interview with Arab News.

He remarked that the country is not in an emergency situation and is not in a rush to seek a bailout from the monetary fund.

Read more: The US should worry about its own Chinese debt: Asad Umar

Pakistan has gone to the IMF repeatedly since the late 1980s. The last time was in 2013, when Islamabad got a $6.6 billion loan to tackle an economic crisis.

However, there are fears that the terms of any new loan will be more stringent than in 2013, due to tense relations with the US, the lender’s biggest donor.

In July, US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo voiced concerns over any IMF bailout being used to repay Chinese loans to Islamabad.

“There’s no rationale for IMF tax dollars — and associated with that, American dollars that are part of the IMF funding — for those to go to bail out Chinese bondholders or China itself,” Pompeo told US television station CNBC.

 

 

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