ISLAMABAD: Former finance minister and Pakistan Muslim League Nawaz (PML-N) leader Miftah Ismail said Thursday that the federal government could have brought a mini-budget if it signs a deal with the International Monetary Fund (IMF), ARY News reported.
Talking exclusively to ARY News to comment on the Economic Survey, Miftah Ismail said when Pakistan Democratic Movement (PDM) came into power the previous government violated the IMF agreement by not increasing the electricity and gas tariffs for two years.
Miftah Ismail said that the inflation rate is 35% and prices of roti, rice and wheat have significantly increased, causing extreme difficulties for common people. “The incumbent government has taken some good decisions, however, it could have done more.”
The former finance minister said that the tax collection target was Rs7,500 billion in FY2022-23 and Rs9,200 can be collected after witnessing the growth rate.
“Dollar price would not increase if the government finalised its agreement with the IMF in November. However, the government did not make any progress on IMF agreement in November. It would be better to reduce expenditures on the development programme in the Centre and the provinces.”
“The saved funds can be invested in other sectors. For privatisation of an institution, it would take at least 460 days. The privatisation period should be reduced and privatisation will bring benefits after a competition environment is created.”
Earlier, the PML-N leader said stakeholders should seriously review the crisis situation in the country. He criticised that the incumbent government is repeating the same mistakes for which it was slamming the previous government as the opposition.
The former finance minister said that nobody is worried about the country but a fight for power is going on. He added that attempts had been made to eliminate Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) and PML-N from the political landscape but they failed.
He said that many PML-N leaders are unhappy over the current status of the country. Miftah Ismail expressed hopes for a Pakistan-IMF deal in the coming days which would improve the economic situation besides ending the default risk.
He claimed that Pakistan acquired loans thrice from the International Monetary Fund (IMF) in two years but the agreement was not implemented. He, however, admitted that the IMF is the only solution to end the economic crisis.