ISLAMABAD: Finance Minister Miftah Ismail has asserted that the increase in prices of petroleum products has nothing to do with International Monetary Fund’s (IMF) conditions, ARY News reported on Tuesday.
Miftah Ismail expressed his views while briefing the federal cabinet meeting chaired by Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif. During the meeting, he rejected the notion by Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) that fuel prices were increased to revive IMF programme.
The federal minister said that the global lender had not demanded to increase the fuel prices, but it was a result of global inflation.
He claimed that the Budget 2022-23 was the first in the country’s history that provided relief to the poor and taxed the rich. Meanwhile, Miftah said that the next round of talks with the Fund will be held today (Tuesday) and tomorrow.
Moreover, the federal cabinet also approved the issuance of Sukuk bonds. In this regard, the finance minister said the bonds would help reduce the burden of local debts.
A day earlier, Miftah Ismail expressed hope that the stalled International Monetary Fund’s (IMF) programme would be revived ‘within one or two days’.
Talking to journalists at Parliament House, the federal minister said that he was hopeful that an agreement with the global lender for the revival of the Extended Fund Facility (EFF) would be reached within one or two days.
“IMF has no relation with the increase in salaries. Also, the tax exemption to the people earning below 1.2 million [annually] will remain in place,” the finance minister said.