Economic uncertainty to culminate by mid of October: finance minister

PTI's probable finance minister Asad Umar


ISLAMABAD: Minister for Finance Asad Umar on Sunday said that the situation of uncertainty in the national economy would be cleared by mid of October as the economic reforms are on the top of the government’s list of priorities.

Talking to a private news channel, he said the government is exploring all other opportunities to strengthen the national economy.

He said recently a team of International Monetary Fund (IMF) had visited Pakistan but it had nothing to do with any bailout package.

He said the government also wants to enhance exports and promote investments and industrial development in the country for producing an exportable surplus and fetching the foreign exchange reserves.

He said the forex reserves are under pressures as every month about US$ 2 billion are being spent to meet different financial needs of the country.

Asad termed the meeting with Saudi officials very productive and said it is premature to forecast the actual volume of investment coming from Saudi Arabia.

He said the government had inherited a budget deficit of Rs 2,300 billion from the previous government that was built due to the ill policies, which destroyed the economy and pushed it to the debt trap.

He said the incumbent government would control its expenditures by adopting austerity and would never spend national money on the luxury lifestyle.

Asad said the government was not intending to privatize the state-owned enterprises including PIA, OGDCL and power distribution companies.

The minister said the national institutions would be developed by bringing the experienced and professionals to turn them into a profitable entity for the nation.

The middle-income people would be provided health and education cards to bring them into the social safety nets and provide them with matching facilities.