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Pakistan’s economy is in a “tight position", Finance Minister Ishaq Dar has said. Dar was addressing investors at an event to commemorate the launch of Pakistan's first development real estate investment trust scheme on the stock exchange.

"We're in a tight position. We don't have $24 billion in foreign exchange reserves that our (last) government left in 2016. But that's not my fault. It's the system's fault," Dar said. At the same time, the Pakistani finance minister noted that there was “no way" that Pakistan was going to default.

Despite the fact that the nation had already paid off its $1 billion in Islamic bonds earlier in December, Pakistan "pseudo-intellectuals" predicted a potential government default, Dar said while criticising such people.

The State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) stated in its annual report, citing international experience, that nations that prioritise growth over pricing and financial stability are unable to sustain growth and repeatedly endure boom-bust cycles followed by the financial crisis.

The Central bank of Pakistan predicted that growth in FY23 will be less than the year's low range. Additionally, it stated that the growth rate would remain below 3-4%.

There is room for improvement in Pakistan's information coverage and timeliness, as annual GDP growth predictions frequently undergo significant modifications compared to preliminary projections, the SBP report said. Forecasting and in-the-moment decision-making are complicated by these, in addition to the limited availability of high-frequency real sector data, the report added.

Earlier in December, Dar said, by raising the present deferred oil payment facility provided by Riyadh to $2.4 billion annually, Pakistan was asking Saudi Arabia for financial assistance. Due to low foreign exchange reserves that hardly cover a month's worth of imports and decades-high inflation that has slowed down its economy, Pakistan has been failing to pay its external financial obligations.

Dar said during an interview with local television channel Samaa that Pakistan had received positive response from Saudi Arabia, who promised that they would support Pakistan. Although he said that the administration was in contact with Saudi authorities, he provided no timeline for the assistance.

(With agency inputs)

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Sounak Mukhopadhyay

Sounak Mukhopadhyay, who also goes by the name Sounak Mukherjee, has been producing digital news since 2012. He's worked for the International Business Times, The Inquisitr, and Moneycontrol in the past. He's also contributed to Free Press Journal and TheRichest with feature articles. He covers news for a wide range of subjects including business, finance, economy, politics and social media. Before working with digital news publications, he worked as a freelance content writer.
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