Pakistan-IMF talks fruitful, announcement due shortly: sources
ISLAMABAD: The talks between Pakistan and the International Monetary Fund (IMF) over revival of stalled $7 billion Extended Fund Facility (EFF) remained successful and a formal announcement will be made shortly, ARY News reported on Thursday, citing sources.
According to details, the development came during a virtual meeting between Prime Minister (PM) Shehbaz Sharif and IMF Mission to discuss the revival of stalled $7 billion Extended Fund Facility (EFF).
Sources told ARY News that the meeting was attended by Finance Minister Ishaq Dar and other officials. The prime minister was apprised of the negotiations with the IMF delegation and its progress.
Sources further claimed that PM Shehbaz Sharif approved the agreement to be singed with the Fund. A formal announcement will be made shortly be Ministry of Finance, they added.
Earlier in the day, Finance Minister Ishaq said that talks with the International Monetary Fund (IMF) are “on track” and matters with the lender related to the loan programme were expected to be settled today.
“We will give you good news very soon,” the finance minister said in a response to a question after addressing a road safety conference in Islamabad.
The finance minister further said, “The final round of talks with IMF is currently underway. I am going to meet the IMF team today”.
A day earlier, it emerged that the policy-level talks between Pakistan and the IMF entered a crucial phase after the IMF mission held a virtual meeting with PM Shehbaz Sharif.
READ: IMF DEMANDS RECORDS OF PAKISTAN’S FLOOD RELIEF EXPENDITURES
International Monetary Fund (IMF) has asked Pakistan to impose roughly Rs600-800 billion in additional taxes in the second round of talks to revive $7 billion Extended Fund Facility (EFF).
During the meeting, the Fund set tough conditions for additional measures that included imposing roughly Rs600-800 billion in additional taxes.
Read More: IMF conditions: Govt asks public servants to declare assets
Sources told ARY News that Pakistan was willing to impose taxes to the tune of Rs200 billion through a ‘mini-budget’, while the Fund pressed Islamabad to foist over Rs600 billion additional taxes.
The lender also demanded the government increase tax collection to 1 percent of Gross Domestic Product (GDP). Sources claimed that the Fund demanded the government fix next fiscal year’s tax collection target at Rs8.3 billion.
Read More: ‘Mini budget’: Govt likely to impose additional duty on luxury goods
Sources further claimed that the IMF also demanded to end phase-wise incentives of sales tax. It also demanded to increase sales tax on petrol from 11 percent to 17 percent, sources said, adding that Fund demanded to end Rs110 billion relief granted to textiles and other industries.
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