Pakistan’s basic debts are so big that it's near bankruptcy, says Finance Minister Asad Umar

File photo: Finance Minister Asad Umar. Photograph:( Reuters )

WION Web Team New Delhi, Delhi, India Apr 03, 2019, 09.28 PM (IST)

Pakistan's Finance Minister Asad Umar on Wednesday claimed that basic debts of the Islamic Republic are so big that it's near bankruptcy.

The Finance Minister said this in a live session on Social Media in Islamabad.

“You are going to the IMF with these massive debts in the toe for a bailout. We have had to fill big gaps” the minister was quoted as saying by Pakistan media.

Pakistan's economic growth is set to slump further to 3.9 per cent in the fiscal year 2019 from 5.2 per cent in 2018, the Asian Development Bank forecast Wednesday, citing the "macroeconomic challenges" faced by the cash-strapped country.

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Earlier on April 1, Asad Umar had said that negotiations with International Monetary Fund (IMF) have reached its final stage with a settlement of almost all issues related to a bailout package.

According to reports, Pakistan intends to seek for a loan worth $6 to $8 billion from the IMF. 

However, a final agreement between the two is expected to finalise when the IMF and the World Bank holds a session in April in Washington.

Pakistan's consumer price inflation rose to 9.41 per cent year-on-year, up from 8.21 per cent in February, after citing a data released by the Bureau of Statistics on Monday.

Last week, Pakistan's Central Bank lifted its key policy rate by 50 basis points to 10.75 per cent, citing continuing inflationary pressures as well as high fiscal and current account deficits.

Consumer price inflation has jumped sharply over the past year, climbing from under four per cent at the start of 2018, lifted by sharp rises in food, fuel and transport costs that have squeezed household budgets.

(With inputs from agencies)