The government contracted $15.32 billion worth of new foreign loans from multilateral institutions and commercial banks during the previous fiscal year (2020-21) — almost 47 per cent higher than $10.45 billion a year earlier.

According to the Annual Report on Foreign Economic Assistance 2020-21 released by the Ministry of Economic Affairs, with these additional loan agreements, the incumbent government contracted a total of about $34.17bn in its first three years in power, while total foreign loan disbursements stood relatively higher at $35.1bn during the three years.

The data showed that Pakistan contracted $8.41bn in the fiscal year 2018-19, followed by $10.45bn in 2019-20 (up 24pc), and $15.32bn in 2020-21.

With this, Pakistan’s external public debt stood at $85.6bn as of June 30, 2021, showing a net increase of about $7.7bn (10pc) compared to $77.9bn as of June 30, 2020. By the end of June 2019, the external public debt amounted to $73.4bn.

In addition, the government also borrowed $2.5bn from international capital markets through Eurobonds and $1bn from the State Administration of Foreign Exchange (SAFE), the Chinese government’s foreign exchange and international trade agency, as a deposit.

Besides, $4.66bn (30pc of the total) was arranged from foreign commercial banks. An amount of $4.19bn (27pc of the total) was contracted for project financing and $952m (or 6pc of the total) for commodity financing.

Energy and power were the key priority sectors for new loan agreements during the 2020-21 fiscal year, with a total share of 35pc out of the total committed project financing of $4.19bn.

The story was filed by the News Desk. The Desk can be reached at


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