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Pak, IMF to reach agreement soon on bailout package: Finance Minister

Press Trust of India  |  Islamabad 

Pakistan, facing acute financial woes, will soon reach an agreement with the IMF on a bailout plan after the global lender revised its stand, Finance Minister Asad Umar on Monday.

Cash-strapped Pakistan is seeking USD 8 billion from the International Monetary Fund (IMF) to bail itself out from a severe balance-of-payments crisis that threatens to cripple the country's economy.

While speaking to journalists here, 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.

Pakistan will reach an agreement soon with the IMF, Dawn newspaper quoted Umar as saying.

He said the new IMF mission chief is to arrive in Pakistan on Tuesday for an introductory visit.

Earlier, media reports said the IMF has proposed tough conditions for a bailout package.

With the generous Chinese assistance, Pakistan has so far received a total of USD 9.1 billion in financial aid packages from friendly countries during the current fiscal year.

While China has pumped-in USD 4.1 billion, Pakistan has got USD 3 billion from Saudi Arabia and USD 2 billion from United Arab Emirates (UAE).

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 said that no final amount for the bailout package had been decided so far, as negotiations were still underway.

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Mon, March 25 2019. 21:20 IST
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