Pakistan to approach IMF and ‘friendly countries’ for loans: Khan
ISLAMABAD: Pakistan will go to the International Monetary Fund and friendly countries for financial help to avert a looming balance of payments crisis, Prime Minister Imran Khan said on Wednesday.
His comments suggest the government will approach both Saudi Arabia and China for loans alongside any assistance provided by the IMF. Beijing and Riyadh have provided Pakistan with financial assistance in the past. Khan said the current account deficit was about $18 billion.
“We do not have enough dollars to pay the instalments of our loans,” he said in a speech. “We debated and decided to go both the IMF and countries which are our friends.”
Khan, who took office in July, has been seeking alternatives to a second IMF bailout in five years - which would be likely to impose tough conditions on government policy, limiting his vision of an Islamic welfare state - but decided on Monday to open talks with the international lending body.
Finance Minister Asad Umar is due to meet officials at this week’s annual conference of the IMF and the World Bank in Bali, Indonesia, to discuss a potential package.