IPR chief finds faults with description of economy
Ministry of Finance on Tuesday observed that a recent report of the Institute of Policy Research (IPR), headed by Dr. Hafiz Pasha, has attempted to find faults with the description of the economy given by the International Monetary Fund (IMF) in the backdrop of recently concluded 9th Review.
A statement of the Ministry of Finance issued here said that the report has suggested that the IMF has either misrepresented or used wrong information fed by the Government.
"Both assumptions are false. Government provides all relevant information as per the standards without any fabrication and the Fund is not unaware of the trends currently prevailing in the economy", the Finance Ministry statement said.
The Ministry further clarified that both the Fund and the Government have considerably more man-hours devoted to economic management in Pakistan than the time Dr. Pasha and his team spends in criticizing the economic performance of the government.
"From the outset of the programme he (Dr. Pasha) has expressed doubts on country's performance.
He never hesitated in expressing the view that the programme is a gift of IMF to Pakistan requiring no discipline or reforms, the statement said.
The Finance Ministry's statement added that the report has taken exception to the IMFs assessment of the growth outlook and has pointed out that he was ignoring some recent negative trends including the damage to cotton crop.
Before responding, let us point out that a difference of professional opinion regarding a forecast of future growth does not represent a "false statement".
The statement further said that on the more substantive basis regarding the growth outlook, "we are again surprised at the claim in the IPR report that the damage to cotton crop would cause a one-percentage point decline in the GDP estimate, for which he has cited no formal assessment.
Indeed, he has not made a correct assessment of the impact. The share of cotton in GDP during 2014-15 was recorded at 1.45 percent".