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Interim finance minister terms last budget by PML-N govt ‘unrealistic’

ISLAMABAD: Interim Finance Minister Shamshad Akhtar on Thursday termed the 2018 budget by former Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz government “unrealistic”.

Speaking to media here, Akhtar said that facts and figures in the budget are a matter of “concern”.

She also commented on the prevalent economic conditions, saying that work on the International Monetary Fund (IMF) project is underway and the incoming government would be apprised about the same.

She said terming the IMF programme “bailout” is not correct.

Akhtar added that fiscal and current account deficit have exceeded the targets, and that there is a need to bring economic stability in the country.

Unnecessary expenses need to be cut down to meet SDG targets, she added.

In an apparent response to US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo’ statement, Akhtar said that the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor has nothing to with the IMF programme.

Pompeo had on Wednesday warned IMF against providing funds to Pakistan to pay off Chinese lenders.

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