IMF to help Pakistan face post-flood challenges: Ruiz

ISLAMABAD: The Resident Representative to Pakistan – International Monetary Fund (IMF), Esther Perez Ruiz on Sunday said that the global financial institution will also help Pakistan face post-flood economic challenges.

While talking to ARY News, the IMF Resident Representative Esther Perez Ruiz said that the institution was aware of the difficulties being faced by Pakistan and standing alongside the flood victims.

Ruiz said that the IMF along with other relief institutions will continue assisting flood-hit Pakistan. She added that IMF was aware of the estimated loss to Pakistan due to flood disasters.

The IMF resident representative said that the institution will also assist Pakistan to face post-flood economic challenges.

Earlier in the month, the Pakistani government hinted at reaching out to global lenders including International Monetary Fund (IMF), World Bank (WB), Asian Development Bank (ADB) and others for monetary assistance to deal with devastating floods in the country.

According to sources privy to the matter, the global lenders will be conveyed a joint report of NDMA, finance and planning and development ministries over losses during the floods.

“A report on initial losses has been prepared and it highlighted a loss of US$10 billion to the national economy owing to the devastating floods,” they said, adding that it included damages to infrastructure and harvest.

The report, according to sources, shared that 33 million population and one million homes were affected due to the floods. “IMF will be asked to give monetary assistance under rapid finance instrument while other global lenders will also be asked to release funds for disaster management,” they said.

State Minister for Finance Aisha Ghous Pasha confirmed the development and said that international lenders will be approached for the rehabilitation of flood-affected areas. “We will complete estimates of damages from floods in two days,” she said.

According to a report, Pakistan has also approached G-20 countries for relief in debt payments as the country faces devastating floods that have killed more than 1,000 people and displaced millions.

According to sources privy to the matter, six agreements with Japan, Italy and Spain will be finalized during the ongoing month for debt relief and it will help in deferring payments of US$189.5 million.

Moreover, UNSG António Guterres also announced that the UN will strongly advocate for ‘debt swaps’ with IMF and World Bank through which developing countries like Pakistan instead of paying a debt to foreign creditors would make payments to finance climate projects at home.

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