Pakistan does not meet minimum requirement of fiscal transparency, says US State Department report

Edited By: Palki Sharma WION
WASHINGTON Published: Jun 16, 2020, 09:58 PM(IST)

File photo. Photograph:( Reuters )

Story highlights

The 2020 Fiscal Transparency Report wants Pakistan to subject its intelligence agency budgets to parliamentary or civilians’ oversight.

An official US report has said that Pakistan does not meet the minimum requirement of fiscal transparency, alleging the country did not adequately disclose all government-guaranteed debt obligations, including financing to state-owned enterprises for the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor projects.

That means -- Pakistan is hiding its sources of funding especially from China. Last week -- Pakistan unveiled its budget for the upcoming fiscal year and the funding for the china-Pakistan economic corridor gets no mention in the budget.

The Imran government made the budget document public, US appreciated the move but later called it Pakistan’s bluff. Making public a fudged document is not the same as disclosing full information.

The Imran government published limited information on debt obligations because Pakistan does not want to tell its own people how much it owes to China.

Pakistan's friend China has also been named in the report for lack of transparency. The fiscal transparency report also makes an unreasonable demand for Pakistan.

The 2020 Fiscal Transparency Report wants Pakistan to subject its intelligence agency budgets to parliamentary or civilians’ oversight. But -- Pakistan’s top spy agency -- ISI -- will not agree to it.

The US is not asking what the ISI does with the money but the question is -- how much of it is being given to the spy agencies?

Maintaining a spy operation is expensive a public disclosure of this could lead to a backlash. ISI may lose the money it gets each year.

According to the report’s conclusion, Pakistan has made no progress on improving its fiscal transparency.

In the report, the State Department concluded that of the 141 countries evaluated, 76, including India, met the minimum requirements of fiscal transparency.

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