The International Monetary Fund (IMF) on Monday assured Pakistan that it would continue its support to the country “once a new government is formed.”
“There is no concept of suspension within the IMF programme,” a brief statement issued by the donor agency said.
“Once a new government is formed, we will engage on policies to promote macroeconomic stability, and enquire about intentions vis-a-vis programme engagement,” the statement added.
The statement also indicates that the seventh review has ended and the three-year Extended Fund Facility (EFF) has been put on hold for the third time since it began in May 2019 when Pakistan and the IMF reached a staff level agreement on economic policies.
Under the agreement, Pakistan was to receive about $6 billion for a period of 39 months, and so far it has received almost half of it.
The IMF programme is scheduled to end in September, 2022.
Earlier, official sources said the IMF and the former PTI government had reached a deadlock amid talks for the seventh review after the IMF discovered a yawning gap between the cost and official estimates provided by Pakistani authorities for former prime minister Imran Khan’s relief package and Kamyab Pakistan Programme (KPP).
Alpha Beta Core CEO Khurram Schehzad, however, believes IMF’s stance is a “usual thing”; because after the dissolution of the National Assembly, Pakistan does not have a finance minister at the moment, while the tenure of the State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) Governor Reza Baqir is about to end.
“For consultations with IMF two officials are important – finance minister and SBP governor,” he said.
The analyst, however, added that now when the new government would be formed, it would initiate a new programme with the IMF or will convert the existing $6 billion programme.
“Under the current situation, chances are that the new government will negotiate with the IMF on a new programme,” he said.