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Pakistan to decide on over $12 billion bailout in 6 weeks: Asad Umar

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ISLAMABAD: Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) leader Asad Umar, who is likely to be the next finance minister of the country, says the country’s economy may need more than $12 billion to fend off a looming financial crisis.  

In an interview to a foreign media outlet, he said the country faces a financing gap of $10 billion to $12 billion.

“The decision needs to be taken in the next six weeks, the further you go forward the more difficult, the more expensive the options become,” Umar said. Pakistan could turn to the International Monetary Fund (IMF), friendly countries and issue diaspora bonds to bolster the nation’s depleting foreign reserves, he added.

Umar said his Movement for Justice party hasn’t yet spoken to any potential lenders. “No formal work can be started until the government is formed,” he said.

The PTI leader said the new government plans to decrease taxes on energy supply factories and agriculture to make businesses more competitive with regional countries.

He said the move will help cover up the lost revenue by introducing a wealth tax.

PTI leader said the new government will bring more transparency to more than 60 billion dollar Belt and Road infrastructure projects in Pakistan.

He said within the first 100 days of the new administration, the state-owned firms will be shifted into a wealth fund similar to Singapore’s Temasek Holdings Pvt to remove them from political interference.

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