Pakistan, IMF plan to move fast on bailout programme

Pakistan and the International Monetary Fund (IMF) will “expeditiously” finish their technical engagement as part of the ninth review of Pakistan’s bailout programme, Pakistan’s finance ministry said on Thursday.

Pakistani finance minister Ishaq Dar held a virtual meeting with the IMF Mission Chief for Pakistan, Nathan Porter.

“Engagement at the technical level shall be expeditiously concluded for proceeding with the 9th Review,” a finance ministry statement said.

Pakistan is in need of funds to shore up its struggling economy, exacerbated by devastating floods that wiped out much of the country’s agriculture and infrastructure in recent months.

The IMF would “sympathetically view” assistance for flood victims, according to the statement, which added that it would firm up estimates for humanitarian assistance and priorities for recovery efforts.

The IMF board in August approved the seventh and eighth reviews of Pakistan’s bailout programme, allowing for a release of over $1.1 billion.