IMF okays $1.3bn package to help Pakistan in fight against coronavirus

Islamabad, April 17, IRNA -- A day earlier the International Monetary Fund (IMF) decided to give a one-year debt relief to Pakistan, the fund also approves 1.386 billion dollars disbursement to the country in fight against COVID-19 Pandemic.

In a statement, IMF said with the near-term outlook deteriorating sharply, Pakistan swiftly put in place measures to contain the impact of the shock and support economic activity. It said crucially, health spending has increased and social support strengthened.

The disbursement will enable country to meet urgent balance of payments needs stemming from outbreak of Covid-19.

The IMF support will help provide a backstop against the decline in international reserves and provide financing to the budget for targeted and temporary spending increases aimed at containing the pandemic and mitigating its economic impact.

“The IMF remains closely engaged with the Pakistani authorities and as the impact of the Covid-19 shock subsides will resume discussions as part of the current EFF,” said the IMF.

Following the Executive Board discussion, First Deputy Managing Director and Acting Chair Geoffrey Okamoto said the outbreak of Covid-19 is having a significant impact on the Pakistani economy. This has created an urgent balance of payments need.

He said in response to the crisis, Pakistan has taken swift action to halt the community spread of the virus and introduced an economic stimulus package aimed at accommodating the spending needed to tackle the health emergency and supporting economic activity.

In response to the crisis, the government of Pakistan has taken swift action to halt the community spread of the virus and introduced an economic stimulus package aimed at accommodating the spending needed to tackle the health emergency and supporting economic activity.

The government of Pakistan has urged citizens to self-quarantine and keep physical interaction to a minimum as the number of cases continues to soar every day.

According to the available statistics, the nationwide tally of COVID-19 patients has soared to 7,236 with 1,765 recoveries and 136 deaths.

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