ISLAMABAD: International Monetary Fund (IMF) chief Christine Lagarde congratulated on Monday Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif on Pakistan’s successful completion of the IMF programme, saying the accomplishment reflected positively on the country.
“It is a fantastic step in your journey that you have achieved a better and solid economic position in a brief period of two years,” a statement issued by the Prime Minister’s Office quoted the IMF managing director as saying.
Lagarde, who is on her first visit to Pakistan lauded PM Nawaz for steering the country out of multiple challenges and achieving macroeconomic stability. “Pakistan is now in a better fiscal position and certainly out of economic crisis,” she said, according to the statement.
The IMF head said Pakistan’s economic growth had gradually increased and fiscal deficit reduced, whereas inflation had continuously declined. “She also appreciated the country’s strengthened social safety nets, tax policy and administration reforms,” communiqué claimed.
The prime minister appreciated IMF’s assistance for the country’s economic recovery and macro-economic stability, saying the government had achieved economic stability by pursuing a comprehensive reforms agenda.
“We are successfully delivering on the major challenges of terrorism, economy and power shortages that we inherited from the previous governments,” the prime minister said, claiming that the tireless efforts of his economic team had turned around the country’s economy in a short span of three years.
“We have dismantled the terrorists’ networks and still 200,000 troops are deployed in the north to completely eliminate terrorism,” he said.
On relations with Afghanistan, the PM emphasised Pakistan was sincere in helping bring stability to Afghanistan. “Peace and stability in Afghanistan would ensure peace in Pakistan and the region as well,” the PM added.
The prime minister said better border management with Afghanistan was also proactively pursued by Pakistan to safeguard the porous border. He said the government’s ongoing endeavours included addressing energy shortfall at the earliest and improving the country’s infrastructure and communication networks.