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Thursday September 29, 2022

IMF to support Pakistan's authorities with relief, reconstruction for flood victims

The Washington-based international lender to work with others in the international community to lend support

By Web Desk
September 18, 2022
The International Monetary Funds (IMF) building in Washington, United States. — AFP/File
The International Monetary Fund's (IMF) building in Washington, United States. — AFP/File

The International Monetary Fund (IMF) on Sunday sympathised with Pakistan's flood victims and said it was "deeply saddened" by the devastation caused because of the natural calamity in the country.

"Our sympathies go to the millions of victims of the floods. We will work with others in the international community to support, under the current programme, the authorities’ relief and reconstruction efforts, and especially their ongoing endeavour to assist those affected by the floods while ensuring sustainable policies and macroeconomic stability," the IMF's country representative Esther Perez Ruiz told Reuters, according to Geo.tv.

Despite the IMF programme's recommencement after a seven-month-long hiatus, Pakistan is still reeling under a severe dollar liquidity crunch as the catastrophic floods have aggravated the macroeconomic fundamentals.

While several leaders and economists reportedly suggested that Pakistan should request the IMF for the provision of a Rapid Financing Instrument (RFI) or Natural Calamity Response-related funding facility, Islamabad has not yet made any fresh request on the expectations of a lukewarm response from the global money-lending organisation.

The IMF programme under $6.5 billion was restored in late August after it was stalled in February 2022 under the previous PTI-led regime when it provided unfunded fuel and electricity subsidies.

The exchange rate has gone under immense pressure in recent days whereby the rupee nosedived 9% against the US dollar,” top official sources said while talking to The News here on Friday.

“The situation has aggravated as demand for imports has gone up manifold but the country does not have enough dollars. “Without improving dollar injections, Pakistan’s macroeconomic vulnerabilities are not going anywhere," the sources added.