The International Monetary Fund (IMF) has sought from the Finance Ministry a fresh report on losses incurred by state-owned enterprises, sources told Geo News on Monday.
According to the sources, the global fund’s mission — currently visiting Pakistan to review the loan tranche — has refused to accept reports based on old statistics.
The IMF’s review mission is in Pakistan currently to complete the first review under the $3 billion loan programme and the possibility of releasing the second tranche of $700 million by the end of December 2023. The tranche would go through if both sides are able to strike a staff-level agreement at the end of the talks.
Pakistan and the IMF teams are currently holding technical-level talks while the policy-level talks will be held next week from November 13-16.
The global lender has asked the Central Monitoring Unit team to submit its first updated assessment report for the first quarter of the current financial year, they added.
The Finance Ministry, on the other hand, has sought time from the IMF for submission of the report by December 2023, sources added.
In its reply to the Fund’s delegation, the team said that government-owned enterprises are currently under scrutiny and the new statistical report will soon be completed, the sources said.
Mission focused on Pakistan’s fiscal framework
Earlier today, The News reported that the visiting IMF mission is focused on Pakistan’s fiscal framework for the ongoing financial year 2023-24 to turn the primary deficit into surplus under the $3 billion standby arrangement (SBA).
The IMF is not concerned by the overall rising fiscal deficit due to the escalating debt servicing of Rs1 trillion for the current fiscal year. The government has planned to keep a lid on the debt servicing bill till Rs7.3 trillion but the IMF has forecast that it may balloon up to Rs8.3 trillion till the end of June 2024.
The primary surplus means that the deficit would be calculated by excluding debt servicing in the shape of principal and mark-up amounts requirement on domestic and foreign loans.