Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) chief and former prime minister Imran Khan have expressed his party’s support for a recently-reached bailout deal with the International Monetary Fund (IMF). After a meeting with IMF officials, Imran Khan’s economic team discussed the staff-level agreement and expressed their endorsement of the overall objectives and key policies. The PTI backs the IMF deal and welcomes the lender’s nine-month $3 billion stand-by arrangement to preserve macroeconomic stability and ensure sound policies leading up to the upcoming national elections.
PTI Backs the IMF Stand-by Arrangement
During the meeting, attended by IMF officials in person and virtually, discussions centered around the IMF’s staff-level agreement with the Pakistani government. The PTI leader and former finance minister, Hammad Azhar, emphasized the importance of political stability and the rule of law in maintaining economic stability; he highlighted that a new government, mandated by the people through free and fair elections, would initiate reforms and engage with multilateral institutions for long-term economic transformation and inclusive growth.
The IMF team called upon Chairman Imran Khan at his residence today. The meeting was attended by IMF country chief Nathan Porter who joined virtually from Washington and Resident Representative Esther Perez who was physically present.
PTI's team included Chairman Imran Khan,…
— Hammad Azhar (@Hammad_Azhar) July 7, 2023
“We welcome the SBA (standby arrangement) to preserve macroeconomic stability by anchoring external financing and sound policies ahead of the national elections due in the fall of this year and until a new government is formed.” “We wish to stress the importance of programs to protect the lower-income segments of the population from high inflation,” he said.
IMF Deal Crucial for Pakistan’s Economy
The new IMF deal is significant for Pakistan’s struggling $350 billion economy; the approval of the agreement by the IMF board on 12th July is crucial to stabilize the country’s financial situation. The program will replace the expired four-year Extended Financing Facility signed by the PTI government in 2019. It aims to anchor external financing, preserve macroeconomic stability, and mitigate economic uncertainties until a new government is formed after the general elections, scheduled for early November.