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June 6, 2020

Fighting effects of Covid-19: Donors submitted action plan to seek loans

Top Story

June 6, 2020

ISLAMABAD: Pakistan has prepared and submitted detailed action plan before international donors for seeking multibillion dollars’ loans over next a couple of years in order to mitigate the effects of COVID-19 pandemic.

“Yes, the Planning Commission tabled National Action Mitigation Plan before the international donors apprising them that government will launch Rs100 billion programme for implementing small scheme and asked them to extend support of multibillion dollars to meet balancing requirement,” top official confirmed to The News here on Friday night.

The government decided that no unapproved project would be included in next budget’s development programme so utilisation would kickstart from July 2, 2020 from start of the next fiscal year. The official said that Pakistan decided to seek foreign loans from multilateral and bilateral creditors after assessing its total losses incurred to its economy in the aftermath of outbreak of COVID-19 pandemic and kickstarted reconciliation of figures in collaboration with the international donors.

The multilateral creditors such as the IMF, World Bank (WB) and Asian Development Bank (ADB) had already extending support to Pakistan for immediate relief but now Islamabad required revival of its economy so needed support from international partners.

In this regard, Adviser to the Prime Minister on Finance and Revenue Dr Abdul Hafeez Shaikh asked the international development partners and the government agencies to continue evaluating the losses suffered by the Pakistan economy due to COVID-19 to help the government come up with a swift and robust policy response.

The adviser was chairing a meeting held here to evaluate the economic losses suffered by the Pakistan economy due to COVID-19. The meeting was also attended by Minister for Industries and Production Hammad Azhar, Adviser to the Prime Minister on Commerce and Investment Abdul Razak Dawood and senior officials of the Finance Division.

The adviser appreciated what he called an excellent work done by the Planning Commission, the State Bank of Pakistan and the development partners in assessing and evaluating the losses suffered by the Pakistan economy in the wake of COVID-19. He said that the government had announced its Rs1.2 trillion stimulus package not only to help the businesses but also the poorest segments of our population in alleviating the their miseries and suffering.

Earlier, Governor State Bank of Pakistan Reza Baqir who attended the meeting on Zoom, presented a detailed analysis of the State Bank of Pakistan as well as its policy response to the economic impact of COVID-19.

Mr Xiaohong Yang, Country Director of Asian Development Bank in Pakistan, also gave a detailed presentation on the economic losses suffered by countries in Asia in general and by Pakistan in particular in the wake of coronavirus. The data presented by ADB also showed promising signs of recovery in Pakistan economy in the post-COVID 19 scenario.

During the meeting, Julien Harneis, United Nations Resident Coordinator Humanitarian Coordinator in Pakistan, and Patchamuthu Illangovan, Country Director of the World Bank in Pakistan, also provided similar data.

Asim Saeed, Member Planning Commission, also presented a detailed report prepared on the instruction of the government on the economic losses suffered by the economy due to COVID-19.