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Agreement with IMF to be reached soon: Asad Umar

Updated March 25, 2019

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Finance Minister Asad Umar on Monday said an agreement would soon be reached with the International Monetary Fund (IMF). — PID/File
Finance Minister Asad Umar on Monday said an agreement would soon be reached with the International Monetary Fund (IMF). — PID/File

Finance Minister Asad Umar on Monday said an agreement will soon be reached with the International Monetary Fund (IMF).

While speaking to journalists in Islamabad, Umar said Pakistan had not changed its stance in talks with the IMF. He added that the IMF had revised their stance and "the gap" between the IMF and Pakistan had decreased.

On a related note, the finance minister said gas and electricity prices will increase gradually as subsidies are withdrawn, adding that the government subsidy on gas and electricity will not be withdrawn together.

He also added that the new IMF mission chief is to arrive in Pakistan tomorrow (March 26) for an introductory visit.

On March 16, Umar had hinted that bailout package talks with the IMF are in their final stages and the government will have further negotiations with the newly appointed IMF mission chief before reaching an agreement.

"Pakistan has come closer to reaching an agreement with the IMF as the differences between Pakistan and the IMF over a possible bailout package have decreased," he had said.

The finance minister had said that a deal would materialise only after a detailed discussion with the IMF mission chief. He made it clear that no final amount for the bailout package had been decided so far, as negotiations were still underway.