IMF downgrades Pakistan’s GDP growth rate from 3.5% to 2%

IMF downgrades Pakistan’s GDP growth rate from 3.5% to 2%

Islamabad (Staff Report/Agencies): The International Monetary Fund (IMF) has decreased the GDP growth rate projection for Pakistan from 3.5% to 2% for the fiscal year 2023.

According to IMF’s World Economic Outlook (WEO), issued on Tuesday, the country’s GDP growth rate would rebound in the next fiscal 2023-24 up to 4.4%.

Talks between Pakistan and IMF on Tuesday started in Islamabad to strike a staff-level agreement on the ninth review under the $7 billion Extended Fund Facility (EFF).

The IMF’s review mission had arrived in Islamabad on Monday and both sides are holding the toughest ever parleys for making renewed efforts to accomplish the pending ninth review under the $7 billion EFF.

Pakistan and the IMF will hold technical-level talks from Tuesday to Friday and then the policy-level talks will commence finalising the Memorandum of Financial and Economic Policies (MEFP) document.

Finance Minister Ishaq Dar received the IMF mission Chief Nathen Porter upon his arrived at the Finance Ministry.

The discussion will revolve around Pakistan’s plan for taking additional taxation measures to fetch over Rs200 billion through a presidential ordinance, rationalising expenditure, and hiking both electricity and gas tariffs for erasing the monster of the circular debt.

The Washington-based lender is suggesting the toughest prescriptions on all fronts of the economy at a time when the foreign exchange reserves are persistently on the decline and touched the lowest ebb of $3.6 billion.