State Minister for Finance and Revenue Aisha Ghaus Pasha Wednesday slammed the International Monetary Fund (IMF) for “intervening” in Pakistan’s internal matters.

“Pakistan’s conduct is in line with the law,” the state minister said, terming IMF Mission Chief for Pakistan Nathan Porter’s statement — regarding the political situation in Pakistan — “extraordinary”.

While the IMF does not comment on domestic politics, Porter had said that the Fund hopes “a peaceful way forward is found in line with the Constitution and the rule of law.”

Hoping that both sides will reach a staff-level agreement before the announcement of the federal budget — expected to be unveiled on June 9 — for the fiscal year 2023-24, the state minister said that the delay is neither good for Pakistan nor the Fund.

Dr Pasha confirmed reports that Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif contacted IMF Managing Director Kristalina Georgieva, adding that the premier assured the fund’s chief that Pakistan will meet all its obligations.

On May 27, PM Shehbaz contacted Georgieva, requesting her to help Pakistan revive the stalled $6.5 billion facility.

PM Shehbaz — according to the sources — requested her to intervene in order to complete the pending ninth review — which would unlock $1.1 billion in financing for the cash-strapped nation.

The coalition government has been negotiating with the Washington-based lender to revive its bailout programme since November, with the financing gap among the biggest roadblocks. There’s about $2.7 billion left to disburse from the $6.5 billion programme that’s scheduled to expire next month.

Also Read  COAS confers military awards to Army personnel