Pakistan is currently facing an economic crunch. The federal government has failed to resolve the crisis and lift the burden off the public. Decades-long negligence of those at the helm has aggravated the current situation. Mismanagement, poor allocation of resources, little to no foreign investment, emerging scarcity of natural resources, etc have all contributed to the worsening economic situation.
Consequently, inflation, poverty, and unemployment are also intensifying. Despite serving in offices for years, the policy-makers are struggling to avert the crisis. International political issues such as the Ukraine-Russia war have contributed to the country’s problems as Pakistan can no longer import gas, wheat, and many other items from Ukraine or Russia. It has to instead import expensive raw materials and wheat, which are depleting our reserves. In addition, strained relations with neighbouring and regional countries have prevented Pakistan from engaging in bilateral trade and investment with them.
Agriculture, which is the backbone of the country’s economy, took a severe hit in the super floods of July 2022. Resultantly, agricultural produce dwindled, and the farmers will struggle to cultivate the water-logged land. Mismanagement within departments is already causing wheat and rice shortages. Corruption and bribery in different departments and sectors have raised inequity among the people and harmed the economy. Unfortunately, a majority of these problems have long existed, but are now coming to a head as the country is running out of reserves and international organisations are restricting bail-out packages. It is high time our ruling elite accepted their mistakes and set their interests aside to work for the country and its people. To prevent an eventual default, the leaders need to forego their political agendas and adopt austerity for the country’s betterment.
Published in The Express Tribune, January 25th, 2023.