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New IMF loan deal to bring economic stability, says PM Shehbaz

Vows to ensure export-led growth to rid country of loans: Says FBR will be totally restructured: Blue passports will be issued to top taxpayers

By News Desk

March 26, 2024 02:56 PM


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Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif has declared that things would not work without another loan deal with the International Monetary Fund (IMF) as it is essential for Pakistan’s economic stability, reported 24NewsHD TV channel.

Speaking at the Tax Excellence Awards ceremony in Islamabad on Tuesday, the prime minister expressed the resolve to bring macroeconomic stability and steer the country towards gradual growth. “For how long we will spend our lives burned by borrowed money as the country is already facing a mountain of debts,” he added.

Shehbaz Sharif said they were paying salaries and carrying out development works with borrowed money. “Thanks God we are fasting otherwise the tea served here would have been funded with IMF loan,” he said.

The prime minister said ensuring export-led growth through collective efforts is the only way to rid the country of loans.

He said the government will undertake efforts to uplift productive sectors such as industries, agriculture and the information technology.

Shehbaz said the government is compelled to enter into a new IMF deal for the purpose of stability. He however said that along with the IMF programme, the government will focus on fostering growth, creating job opportunities and addressing the issue of inflation.  

The premier said the federal government in collaboration with the provincial governments will create enabling circumstances for the private sector and address their problems.  He said that refunds to the tune of Rs65 billion have been made to the exporters, expressing the determination that in future the refunds will be made in a timely manner.

The premier said they will also go towards providing electricity to the industries on competitive rates in order to enhance their productivity.

He said the platform of Special Investment Facilitation Council (SIFC) has been established to give impetus to the investment.  He said the second phase of CPEC will be taken forward.

As regards tax reforms, Shehbaz Sharif said the FBR will be totally restructured. He said consultants will be hired next month for complete digitalization of the tax collection body. Referring to low tax to GDP ratio, he said the government will have to enhance the tax base.

He stated that the leading taxpayers and exporters are the heroes of this country. He announced that the recipients of today's awards, consisting of exporters and taxpayers, will be issued blue passports.

Additionally, he mentioned that top taxpayers will be presented with an honor card. Furthermore, he declared that the top recipient of each category of today's awards are being bestowed with the status of honorary ambassadors. He said these announcements are aimed at encouraging the people to pay their taxes.

In his remarks on the occasion, Finance Minister Muhammad Aurangzeb said the digitalization of the FBR is aimed at ensuring transparency and increase the revenue collection. He was confident that this will also restore the trust and confidence of the people in this institution.

In his welcome address, Chairman FBR Amjad Zubair Tiwana said an agreement has been signed recently to digitalize the tax administration and automate the processes.

The President of Federation of Pakistan Chambers of Commerce and Industry and the Chairman of Pakistan Business Council commended the government for recognizing the leading taxpayers and exporters.


News Desk


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