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ADB to provide Pakistan $3.4bn loan for budgetary support

Sunday - June 16, 2019 11:54 am , Category : WORLD
Islamabad, June 16 (IANS) The Asian Development Bank (ADB) would provide a loan of $3.4 billion to Pakistan for budgetary support, a Minister has confirmed.
The announcement was made by federal Minister for Planning, Development and Reforms Khusro Bakhtiar at a press conference on Saturday, adding that an agreement had been reached between the ADB and the Finance Ministry in this regard, Dawn news reported on Sunday.
Of the total amount, $2.1 billion would be released within a year of the agreement, Bakhtiar said.
When asked to explain the terms of the loan, the Minister only said it was "on a concessional rate".
Later in the day, Adviser to the Prime Minister on Finance Abdul Hafeez Shaikh took to Twitter to confirm the development.
"The ADB will provide $3.4 billion in budgetary support," he said in his tweet.
"$2.2 billion will be released this fiscal year (FY), starting in the first quarter of FY 2019-20. This will help the reserve position and the external account."
Earlier this week, the Imran Khan-led government unveiled a 7,022 billion Pakistani rupees austerity budget for the fiscal year 2019-20, setting ambitious tax collection targets to stabilize a faltering economy, reports Geo News.
The government is seeking help to overcome a ballooning balance of payments crisis.
Last month, it reached an accord in principle with the International Monetary Fund (IMF) for a three-year, $6 billion bailout package aimed at shoring up its finances and strengthening a slowing economy.
The ADB financing would come on top of the IMF loan.

--IANS ksk