Dar claims KSA, China assured Pakistan of $13b package

ISLAMABAD: Finance Minister Ishaq Dar on Saturday claimed China and Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA) had assured Pakistan that they would take care of Islamabad’s financial requirements till June 2023, saying both the brother countries had assured of providing a financial package to the tune of $13 billion.

Talking to media on Saturday, Finance Minister Ishaq Dar said that during Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif recent visit to Beijing, the Chinese leadership had promised to roll over $4 billion in sovereign loans, refinance $3.3 billion commercial bank loans and increase currency swap by about $1.45 billion — from 30 billion yuan to 40 billion yuan.

He said China and Saudi Arabia had given assurances to Pakistani delegations under Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif during recent visits that they will take care of Islamabad’s financial requirements till June 2023.

Dar further said the Chinese had also agreed to fast-track the ML-1 (Main Line-1) project from Karachi to Peshawar.

The finance minister further said the Karachi Circular Railway (KCR) and Hyderabad-Karachi motorway projects were also taken up during the meeting and the KCR would soon be in the implementation phase.

Responding to question, Ishaq Dar said Saudi Arabia had also given a positive response to Pakistan’s request for increasing its financing by another $3 billion to $6 billion and doubling its deferred oil facility of $1.2 billion.

He further said that Saudi Arabia would also construct a Petrochemical Complex in Gwadar at an estimated investment of $11 to $12 billion.

Resolve to proceed with privatization process

Meanwhile, the Federal Minister for Finance and Revenue expressed resolve of the government to proceed further for the privatization of loss-making state entities.

He also impressed upon the Privatization Commission to frame up modalities to overcome bottlenecks hampering the smooth expeditious privatization. He further extended his full support and cooperation.

He was chairing a meeting with Federal Minister for Privatization/ Chairman Privatization Commission Abid Hussain Bhayo on privatization programme here at the Finance Division.

SAPM on Finance Tariq Bajwa, SAPM on Revenue Tariq Pasha, Secretary Finance, Secretary Privatization and senior officers attended the meeting. The meeting reviewed the privatization programme of the state-owned entities, and discussed various issues impeding the progress of privatization and bottlenecks in the privatization process of NPPMCL and other entities.

The chair was also apprised of the issues related to completion of privatization of PTCL.




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