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Asad rejects reports of talks with IMF about rupee devaluation

Asad rejects reports of talks with IMF about rupee devaluation
April 5, 2019
KARACHI (92 News) – Finance Minister Asad Umar on Friday rejected the reports about talks with the International Monetary Fund (IMF) about the exchange rate target or rupee devaluation against dollar value. Addressing a gathering at the Pakistan Stock Exchange through video link, Asad Umar said that no further rupee devaluation is likely and rumours should not be spread as they damage the market. He also said that economic stability is government’s foremost priority. The finance minister said that artificially maintaining the rupee’s value at high level, has damaged the economy. He said the State Bank of Pakistan has also stated that the value of rupee has been in equilibrium now and in tune with the market. He said in the past, rupee was kept artificially high. “We have not spoken to the International Monetary Fund regarding the exchange rate level,” he mentioned. He urged, “Rumours should not be spread and don’t waste money in buying dollars, invest it in the market.” Asad Umar said that the incumbent government has taken various difficult decisions in the larger interest of the country. He said this government wanted to work according to the system worldwide and change will be introduced in phases. He also said that the work on the National Finance Commission has also been started. “We know the difficulties faced by the economy and practical steps needed for economic improvement,” he added. He said Pakistan has a smaller economy. “The world market holds trillions of dollars, while the volume of Pakistan’s economy is around 300 billion dollars,” he said. The minister said, the Pakistani companies only meet the domestic needs. ” We have to get out of the traditional official thinking and to work with the world in tandem. Asad Umar urged the industrialists to invest in the market and advised all to not waste money by buying dollars. Businessmen and stock directors attended the gathering.
Trade deficit reduced due to prudent policies: Asad Umar
Asad Umar has said trade and current account deficit have reduced as a result of prudent economic policies of the government. Speaking to the journalists in Islamabad, he said trade deficit has declined from 24.2 to 21.5 billion dollars and current account deficit came down from 11.4 to 8.5 billion dollars in the last eight months. Asad Umar said current account deficit reduced by 72 per cent. He said balance of payment has also decreased. The minister said the government is aware of the inflation, but it is too less than it was during first eight months of the PPP and the PML-N regimes. Regarding Foreign Direct Investment, he said in first seven months of the PML-N government FDI was 573 million dollars, which is 1441 million dollars in the same period of the PTI government. Public debt was 3.7 billion dollars in the last six months of the PML-N government, which is 1.7 billion dollars in the first six months of the PTI administration. He further said consumption of petrol, gas, and electricity have also increased.