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HomeFinance & InvestingBusinessFinMin Aurangzeb optimistic inflation, interest rates will drop gradually - SUCH TV

FinMin Aurangzeb optimistic inflation, interest rates will drop gradually – SUCH TV


Federal Finance Minister Muhammad Aurangzeb on Friday provided updates on the country’s economic recovery efforts, emphasizing the positive strides made in various sectors.

Addressing an event at the Pakistan Stock Exchange, the minister revealed that the current account deficit had remained in surplus throughout February. He further stressed the pivotal role played by the stock market in driving economic improvement, underlining its importance in stimulating investment and bolstering overall economic activity.

He also mentioned ongoing discussions with the International Monetary Fund (IMF), signalling the government’s commitment to securing support and guidance for economic reform initiatives.

Furthermore, Aurangzeb expressed confidence in the effectiveness of the government’s economic policies, which he claimed would contribute significantly to improving the economy. He also credited the measures taken during the caretaker government period as instrumental in laying the groundwork for future progress.

Highlighting the engagements with the IMF, the finance minister revealed plans for meetings with the organisation in Washington in the coming days.

“We are heading towards a major program with the IMF and will maintain microeconomic stability with it. We will need a three-year programme with the IMF,” he remarked, adding that the talks with the Fund were scheduled for April 14 and 15.

Aurangzeb affirmed that the government was working day and night to expedite the privatisation process. He also cited encouraging progress in the privatisation of Pakistan International Airlines (PIA). Additionally, he mentioned that privatizing distribution companies (Discos) was also being considered as part of broader endeavours.

“Discos will be taken towards privatisation by working on them,” the minister asserted.

He further stressed that electricity theft had to be reduced, as there was an estimated Rs500 billion worth of power being stolen.

“The government will provide the policy, and the private sector will execute it,” Aurangzeb explained, and also added that the best harvest of rice and wheat had been achieved.

Furthermore, he said that the outsourcing of airports was at an advanced stage, while the tax-to-GDP ratio of 9% would be taken to 15%. “We have to end the economic leakages,” the minister insisted, adding that the amount of leakage is Rs3 trillion, and even if half of this was achieved, it would be encouraging.

“If the leakages are stopped, the additional money will be spent on public projects,” said an optimistic Aurangzeb.

He also noted the improvement in the banking sector, and reminded the people that the government’s Ramazan package had been increased from Rs7 to Rs12 billion. “We have to reduce the government’s expenses,” he announced.

The minister also expressed optimism that the inflation rate would drop, and hoped the interest rate would also decrease correspondingly. “Inflation will gradually come down in the country,” he claimed while speaking about the upcoming IMF programme the government is hoping to clinch.

Moreover, Aurangzeb said work on the restructuring of the Federal Board of Revenue was going on by a committee that he himself was heading. “If human interference ends, only then will corruption decrease,” he added.

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