IMF Board Releases Schedule, Excludes Pakistan’s Economic Review

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According to the approval of the IMF board, Pakistan will receive a installment of $1.1 billion – File: Photo

Islamabad: The schedule for the meeting of the Executive Board of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) has been released until April 29, which does not include Pakistan’s economic review.

The current agenda of the IMF Executive Board meeting does not include Pakistan’s economic review, while the staff-level agreement between Pakistan and the IMF was reached on March 20, 2024.

According to the approval of the IMF Executive Board, Pakistan will receive the final installment of $1.1 billion and with the final approval of the installment, the $3 billion Stand-By Arrangement will come to an end.

Prior to this, a meeting of the IMF Executive Board on Pakistan’s affairs was scheduled for the end of April, and the Ministry of Finance stated that Pakistan had fulfilled all objectives for the final installment and the staff-level agreement would recommend the approval of the last installment mission.

Finance Minister Mohammad Irfan mentioned in an interview with a foreign news agency in Washington on April 16 that discussions have begun with the IMF on new loan agreements worth billions of dollars for the economic reform program.

Mohammad Irfan said that under the ongoing loan program agreement with the IMF, there is a possibility for the final installment of $1.1 billion to be approved by the end of this month, and Pakistan has also started discussions for new long-term loan programs worth several billion dollars.

Expectations are for the agreement on the new loan program next month, says Mohammad Irfan

Speaking to a foreign news agency in Washington, Finance Minister Mohammad Irfan stated that Pakistan’s aim is to reach an agreement on a new loan package in May, the current loan program will end in April and there is hope for a new loan agreement with the IMF in May.

He said Pakistan is in search of a long-term and substantial loan, assistance is vital for macroeconomic stability and structural reforms, and it is expected that the IMF mission will be in Islamabad in mid-May.

He mentioned that if an agreement is reached on the loan, they will also request additional financing, which will be done through concessional and sustainable trust, and the current state of the loan is looking much better.

He mentioned that a large portion of our loans are being rolled over, there is no major risk during the current or the next financial year, and we have to make payments of approximately $25 billion on average every year.

The Federal Finance Minister mentioned that they are hopeful of a return to the global markets with Green Bonds, we need to return in a specific rating environment and have started dialogue with rating agencies, hoping for an improvement in ratings in the next financial year.

Mohammad Irfan declined to comment on the size of the new program with the IMF, stating that Pakistan will open a new tab of at least $6 billion in the next program.

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