The Pakistan mission chief of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) stated that the lender is getting ready to discuss Pakistan’s budget proposals for the next fiscal year as part of a much-anticipated bailout package for the financially struggling nation, Reuters reported.
Negotiations over key budget targets such as the fiscal deficit are one of the last hurdles before the IMF approves a staff-level agreement to release $1.1 billion in funding, which has been delayed for months, that is crucial for Pakistan to resolve an acute balance of payments crisis.
A successful staff level agreement (SLA) for the 9th review, which has been pending since November, will unlock the $1.1 billion tranche. The funding is a part of a $6.5 billion bailout package the IMF approved in 2019, which is due to end in June, prior to the budget.
“In all IMF programs, the authorities issue a letter of intent associated with the last review outlining their policy intentions for the period after the program,” said Nathan Porter, mission chief to Pakistan.