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PBC calls for a ‘5-year term’ IMF program in a letter to the lender

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Pakistan Business Council (PBC), the country’s largest private sector advocacy platform, has called for “a longer, five-year term” program with the International Monetary Fund (IMF), as the current program is scheduled to expire in April.
In a letter dated March 1, 2024, addressed to Esther Perez Ruiz, Resident Representative in Pakistan for the IMF, PBC said it believes that the front-loading of targets given by IMF stems from the relatively short-term programs offered to Pakistan.
“For this reason, we suggest that the 24th program be of a longer, five-year term,” it said.
Pakistan averted default last summer thanks to a short-term IMF program.
Ahead of the bailout, the South Asian nation had to undertake a slew of measures demanded by the IMF, including revising its budget, a hike in its benchmark interest rate, and increases in electricity and natural gas prices.
In its letter, the PBC said: “As the new government takes shape, its major objective on the economy will be to negotiate a fresh, 24th IMF Programme.”
PBC believed that the previous 23 programs failed to lead to sustainable reforms because of the need for more political will and the determination of various governments.

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