Govt obtained $9.750 billion in foreign loans in two and a half years: NA told



Parliamentary Secretary for Finance Rana Fazal told the National Assembly (NA) on Friday that the government had obtained foreign loans amounting to $9.750 billion during the last two and a half years.

Replying to a question from MNA Sajda Begum, he told the House that this foreign loan did not include $3.495 billion internal loan and $4.769 billion obtained from IMF.

He pointed out that the loan had been acquired by the government to increase foreign exchange reserves and that it could not spend this to meet its own requirements.

MQM MNA Abdul Rashid Godel asked about what interest rate the government had floated the bonds in the international market on and as to why the government was slapping additional taxes amounting to Rs40 billion. Fazal responded that the government had secured bonds at eight per cent interest rate and that they will have to be returned over a period of 16 years. The mark up rate is higher in respect of the bonds which are floated for longer period, he said, and added that these had been acquired to meet any emergency situation in future.

He told the house that the tax collection target was set at Rs 640 billion for the first quarter but that it had not been achieved. “We are facing a shortfall of Rs 40 billion at present,” he said, explaining the reason behind the additional taxes.