Tarin acknowledges IMF asked Pakistan to show how it would fund $1.5bn subsidy package

Published March 20, 2022
Finance Minister Shaukat Tarin addresses a press conference in Islamabad on Sunday. — DawnNewsTV
Finance Minister Shaukat Tarin addresses a press conference in Islamabad on Sunday. — DawnNewsTV

Finance Minister Shaukat Tarin acknowledged on Sunday that the International Money Fund (IMF) had asked the government to explain how it would fund a $1.5 billion subsidy package announced by Prime Minister Imran Khan, adding that the Fund was subsequently provided the details.

Embattled PM Imran, facing a no-confidence move to oust him from office by opposition parties, had last month announced a cut in petrol and electricity prices despite a steep rise in the global oil market. The move had raised eyebrows, with experts questioning how it would be justified to the IMF.

“There are no issues. We have given them details as to where the funds would come from,” Tarin said in a press conference in Islamabad today, adding the IMF wanted details of the resources to fund the subsidy in fuel and electricity, which Pakistan has frozen for the next four months until the new budget.

The IMF has begun the seventh review of the $6 billion rescue package agreed with Pakistan in 2019, and Tarin said he will have a final meeting with the lender on Tuesday.

The IMF asked it will need to see the agreements of the dividends of State-Owned Enterprises (SOEs) as well as details of the spare funds the central government will get from provinces.

Also read: Next IMF tranche hangs in the balance

“We have done our homework,” Tarin said.

Some of the subsidy money would also come from the above-target revenues Pakistan was getting this fiscal year, he had said previously.

Earlier this month, Tarin said revenue would hit Rs6.1 trillion ($34.2 billion), compared to a target of Rs5.8tr.

Pakistan had to undertake fiscal tightening measures to pass its last IMF review, which was delayed by months as the government struggled to complete prior action required by the lender to release $1 billion in February.

Opinion

A crisis of trust?

A crisis of trust?

Most damaging fallout of the constant demonisation of opponents by political leaders is erosion of public trust in politicians.

Editorial

An unseemly dispute
08 Aug, 2022

An unseemly dispute

THERE is clarity, but perhaps not of the kind that Chief Justice of Pakistan Umar Ata Bandial hoped to achieve when...
Unfair on taxpayers
Updated 08 Aug, 2022

Unfair on taxpayers

Unfair move has drawn valid criticism as it coincides with drastic increase in income tax on salaried people and corporates.
Polio nightmare
08 Aug, 2022

Polio nightmare

AS if the resurgence of polio in southern KP were not enough, officials and international monitoring bodies must now...
Political stunt
Updated 07 Aug, 2022

Political stunt

The former PM is attempting to make a very expensive point with his decision to contest all 9 NA seats going up for by-election.
Monsoon emergency
07 Aug, 2022

Monsoon emergency

AS another wet weather system has entered Pakistan, and the federal government has declared a “monsoon...
Taliban’s denial
07 Aug, 2022

Taliban’s denial

THE Afghan Taliban’s recent statement denying any knowledge of the now deceased Al Qaeda chief Ayman...