ISLAMABAD: Finance Minister Shaukat Tareen has said that the current IMF program was very difficult. We will not opt out of the IMF program but we will change its methodology. Will increase
Giving a press briefing in Islamabad, Finance Minister Shaukat Tareen said that we do not have the capacity to increase the tariff. Talks are underway with the IMF team on the tariff. Revolving credit is increasing. The Prime Minister is not in favor of raising the tariff. We will take similar steps and increase it. However, we cannot increase it suddenly. We can go ahead and try to explain it to the IMF.
The Federal Minister said that the biggest challenge to the country is the current account deficit and the government had to go to the IMF due to difficult circumstances. The IMF kept strict conditions which have political value even before my time. When they went to the IMF, the world was facing terrorism and they did not get a friendly environment from the IMF in which there were no conditions, but now when the government went to the IMF, conditions were imposed.
The Finance Minister said that our exports have zero FTIs and we also took money from our friend Saudi Arabia. We were moving towards economic stability when Corona came. He said that the growth due to Corona was 92% to 57%. But now we have to move from economic stability to growth. In the 70’s we used to do economic planning.
Shaukat Tareen said that the government has also taken steps to deal with Corona. At present, remittances are increasing at a record pace. However, we are facing a threat due to Corona but we have to improve the economy. He said that the revenue in March increased by 46 per cent over the previous year and the growth rate was 92 per cent till April 20. However, due to the Corona lockdown at the end of April, it declined to 57 per cent. “We are in danger from Corona, otherwise our economic recovery has begun,” he said.
“At the moment, the biggest focus is on price stability. We want to expand measures in the area of social security,” he said. The reason for not coming into the tax net is also harassment. 62% of the population lives in our villages and their occupation is agriculture. However, this sector has not improved in the last 10 years and we will have to spend money on it. “Our industries are not up to standard. Most of the export industries are family businesses which are divided after two generations,” he said.
He said that in this regard, GDP growth should be kept at least 5%, money should be spent on agriculture, water and other necessities should be taken care of while there is no foreign direct investment in industries by increasing the capacity of industries. Foreign investment can be brought in. Administrative matters of federally owned entities will be handed over to the private sector.