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PM Shehbaz hopes upcoming IMF programme will be last

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Spokesman Report

ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif vowed to take strict actions to achieve the country’s economic targets, promising that this would be the last loan programme with the International Monetary Fund (IMF).

In his address to the nation, PM Shehbaz expressed satisfaction over the revenue collection during the current fiscal year 2023-24, saying that the collection increased by 30 percent as compared to last year.

The prime minister said that new revenue collection targets have been set for the next financial year (2024-2025), saying that achieving these targets seem ‘challenging’.

He assured that the federal government will make efforts to collect taxes and eliminate ‘corrupt’ practices. PM Shehbaz said that during his foreign official visits, he sought investment opportunities in Pakistan rather than asking for loans.

The prime minister assured that the government will facilitate the investments through the Special Investment Facilitation Council focusing on agriculture, energy, and other sectors.

He praised overseas Pakistanis for sending USD 3 billion in remittances last month, terming it their confidence in the government’s policies.

Regarding long-term economic plans, PM Shehbaz said Pakistan begun implementing our economic agenda for the next five years and are committed to maintaining the success of our economic strategies.

PM Shehbaz said that the private sector would be encouraged to establish new industrial units.

‘Tough decisions’ to be taken

PM Shehbaz also announced taking ‘difficult’ decisions to brighten the future of Pakistan.

“We (the government) will not tolerate any pressure and are ready to make any sacrifice for the country,” he added.

“In the coming days, people will see what major changes are going to happen. This struggle is being started against the elite,” the prime minister said while hoping that the nation would support him.

Economic revival agenda

The prime minister also spelled out his five-year agenda of economics stability.

“We have defined the future course of action and we will pursue it with utmost honesty and strictness. We will spend every saved penny on public welfare. We will eliminate red tapism. This journey is not only difficult and long but also demands sacrifice from the government authorities as well as the elite,” PM Shehbaz said in his address.

100-day performance

The prime minister said that Pakistan achieved several milestones since the government came into power including reducing inflation from 38 percent to 12 percent.

“Reducing interest rates on loans from 22 percent to 20 percent, increasing investment in the country, and providing relief to the public by reducing petrol prices by Rs 10.50 per litre are one of few measures taken by the government,” the prime minister added.

PM Shehbaz said that the reduction in petroleum prices would surely benefit the common man. “Reducing the prices of petrol and diesel will provide some relief to the people who are suffering from inflation,” the prime minister said.

He said that the performance over the past three months has been commendable. “We are committed to putting the country on the path to progress,” he added.

He extended felicitation to the Pakistani nation and the Muslim Ummah on the auspicious occasion of Hajj and Eid-ul-Adha.

Atrocities in IoJK, Gaza condemned

The prime minister also condemned the ongoing Israeli aggression in Gaza, describing it as unprecedented in human history. He also expressed sorrow over the loss of thousands of innocent lives, including children, and prayed for the freedom of illegally occupied Jammu and Kashmir and Palestine.

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