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Crucial talks with IMF begin in Doha

Crucial talks with IMF begin in Doha, Qatar, today.

The government and the International Monetary Fund (IMF) have begun the 7th Economic Review Talks in Doha on Wednesday, the Ministry of Finance shared the development in a tweet.

“Talks with the IMF Mission started today. Finance Minister Mr. Miftah Ismail, MoS Dr. Aisha Ghous Pasha, Finance Secretary Hamed Yaqoob Shaikh, Acting Governor SBP Dr. Murtaza Syed, Chairman FBR Mr. Asim Ahmad, and senior officers from Finance Div joined virtually,” the ministry stated.

The talks with IMFare expected to continue till May 25.

The country is expected to request the global lender to immediately release the $1 billion loan.

A day earlier, the finance ministry said that a team of the Finance Division had left for Doha for consultations with the IMF mission.

“If negotiations with the IMF are successful, Pakistan’s stalled programme will restart and it will get the next installment ($1 billion) of the loan.”

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According to the sources,  the IMF is all set to ask policymakers for further tightening of fiscal and monetary policies. It will recommend taking additional taxation measures in the upcoming budget. 

The IMF has asked Islamabad to jack up the FBR’s tax collection target of Rs7,255 billion for the next budget of 2022-23 against the desired target of Rs6,100 billion for the current fiscal year. 

The IMF is also recommending further jacking up the policy rate by 100 to 150 basis points in the coming monetary policy.

Pakistan has so far received $3 billion, with the programme due to end later this year.

The officials are seeking an extension to the programme through to June 2023.

 

Saman Siddiqui

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