Ishaq Dar, minister of finance, says he “won’t take dictation” from the IMF

Friday: Federal Minister for Finance and Revenue Senator Muhammad Ishaq Dar ruled against following financial management instructions from the International Monetary Fund (IMF).

In an interview with Geo News’ “Aaj Shahzeb Khanzada Kay Saath” show, Dar stated that he would not ask the IMF for loans to Pakistan, telling the lender’s representatives, “you can’t dictate; if the money doesn’t come in, we’ll manage.”

The finance minister, who started an office in September, stated that “he doesn’t care” if the IMF does not supply funding and that the Fund may wait for Pakistan to manage its economy, as the government could not burden the people by increasing the cost of petroleum items.

The Finance Minister stated that all agreements with the international lender were in order, and the administration has been meeting weekly with the International Monetary Fund for the ninth review.

According to the news, Pakistan and the IMF continue negotiating the ninth review. Still, neither party has yet reached a comprehensive agreement on a revised macroeconomic framework for the current fiscal year.

The protracted nature of the negotiations may postpone the conclusion of the ninth review and distribution of the $1 billion tranche until 2023.

Pakistan and the international lender are both tight-lipped, and no one is ready to speak on the record. However, discussions in the background indicate that the talks were in limbo due to disagreements over the updated macroeconomic and fiscal framework discussed with the IMF.

The finance minister, however, stated that Pakistan has satisfied all of the Fund’s requirements but that the lender is “behaving unusually” since both parties have yet to reach an agreement.

“However, I have never and will never accept orders from organizations such as the IMF. Whether fortunate or unfortunate, the IMF has been designated as the financial doctor of nations “He mourned.

The minister’s declaration comes at a time when Pakistan’s foreign reserves are in a less-than-ideal shape since they can only fund imports for the next 1,6 months — and following the floods, imports are projected to rise.

Although the trade deficit decreased by 30.14 percent to $14.4 billion in the first five months of the current fiscal year 2022-23, foreign exchange reserves held by the State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) decreased by 4.17 percent to $7,497.7 million as of November 25.

Pakistan, which has sustained $30 billion in flood-related damages, is anticipated to receive funding from foreign donors, but the promises from friendly nations are still in doubt.

However, the finance minister is optimistic that Pakistan would not only satisfy IMF conditions but also ensure that monies continue to flow into the SBP’s account.

Without naming the nation, he stated that Pakistan would get $3 billion from a “friendly country” over the next two weeks.

Dar criticizes the PTI and Miftah Ismail harshly.
The finance minister assured that Pakistan would never default, categorically refuting PTI chairman Imran Khan’s claims about the impending economic collapse. Pakistan has not defaulted and will not in the future, Inshallah, he said.

According to the finance minister, the last PTI administration left the country in “chaos.”

Referring to Khan’s remarks about the default, Dar stated that he should consider that he is not serving the country by making such statements, as they send a “bad impression” to the international community.

He reaffirmed that the government was taking steps to timely repay the debt. Pakistan’s potential default could be among Khan’s desires, according to Dar, but it will never occur.

Additionally, the finance minister accused the PTI chairman of prioritizing politics over the state.

Dar advised Khan to wait for the election, as the election’s schedule and procedure are outlined in the constitution.

Assaulting the PTI, he asserted that after the party was removed from power, it left $9 billion in reserves, of which $3 billion were loans from a country, and the rest were from other nations.

The finance czar, criticizing the former finance minister of his party, stated that Miftah Ismail should be questioned about his debt repayment plans.

“Should Miftah Ismail not have secured $32 million?” questioned the finance minister. Dar maintained that he did not wish to respond to Miftah’s statements because he was a party member.