Finance czar predicts country’s reserves to reach $10bn by June

ISLAMABAD: Finance Minister Muhammad Aurangzeb predicted that the foreign exchange reserves of Pakistan will increase by nine to ten billion dollars by the end of this ongoing fiscal year.

Addressing the inaugural Islamic Business Summit in Islamabad today, the Finance Minister said that at present the foreign exchange reserves stand at eight billion dollars and the latest tranche from the IMF understood by arrangement will take the foreign exchange reserves to over nine billion dollars.

Federal Minister for Finance & Revenue highlighted the exchequer’s better position in comparison to the previous year when the foreign exchange reserves had dipped to three point four billion dollars. The finance czar also stressed the need for reforms in the energy sector and highlighted the significance of the “essential” privatization of loss-making enterprises.

READ MORE: Aurangzeb, Donald Lu discusses Pakistan’s reform agenda

Furthermore, the Finance Minister added the government has initiated a discussion with the IMF for seeking another bailout program in the range of $6 to $8 billion under the Extended Fund Facility (EFF) to bring permanence to the macroeconomic stability and ensure execution of structural reforms agenda with the possibility of augmentation through climate financing.

Talking at the summit, Senator Aurangzeb said, “IMF is a means to an end, but not the end. If we want to bring permanence to it, we need to focus on the road to the market.”

“IMF is a means to an end, but not the end. If we want to bring permanence to it, we need to focus on the road to the market.” Senator Muhammad Aurangzeb, Federal Minister for Finance & Revenue#LeadersinISB #CollaboratingforGrowth

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Additionally, FinMin Aurangzeb said the government has set targets to keep the current account deficit and fiscal deficit within reasonable limits. He said tax collection increased by thirty-point-two percent in the first nine months of the current fiscal year.

A day earlier, in an interview with The National, Muhammad Aurangzeb emphasized that Pakistan is on track to secure a new loan from the IMF and macroeconomic factors are shifting in its favor as it works to boost its lagging economy.

Finance Minister Muhammad Aurangzeb expressed optimism that Pakistan’s currency has finally stabilized and said rampant inflation is on track to drop to single-digit levels by the end of next year.

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