Issue 47

Budget Study Centre   Issue 47
August 22, 2019


Fortnightly Budget News Alerts

Foreign investment down 22pc

Dawn (Aug 22, 2019)

KARACHI: The total foreign investment plunge d by 22 per cent in the first month of this fiscal year, reported the latest data from the State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) on Wednesday. The total investment fell to $107.2 million during July, lower by 21.64pc over $136.8m recorded in same month of the previous year. This could possibly be a worrying sign for the government which has been met … Read More

Another hurdle crossed as FATF meetings loom

Dawn (Aug 22, 2019)

ISLAMABAD: The Asia-Pacific Group a regional affiliate of the Financial Action Task Force (FATF)-hasadopted Pakistan`s third Mutual Evaluation Report (MER) on strengthening of anti-money laundering and countering financing terrorism (AML/ CFT) safeguards and is expected to mal(e public its assessment shortly. The Ministry of Finance on Wednesday said the 22nd Annual … Read More

Economic front of Pakistan (PTI’s one year)

The Daily Times (Aug 21, 2019)

A Year is lapsed for PTI that came into power first time with rhetoric to make a new Pakistan by brining corruption free good governance. If one may execute a quantitative analysis, economic indicators may be assumed as a tool of performance together with recovery figures through accountability and broadening of Tax Net. Good news is that the Current Account… Read More

Pakistan current account deficit shrinks massive 73% in July

The Express Tribune (Aug 21, 2019)

KARACHI: Pakistan’s current account deficit narrowed a significant 73% to $579 million in July, the first month of the current fiscal year, following the government’s agreement with the International Monetary Fund (IMF) on implementing tough measures for a bailout of $6 billion. The current account deficit stood at $2.13 billion in the same month of last year, the State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) reported… Read More

Global economic slowdown set to hit Pakistan’s exports

The Gulf Times (Aug 20, 2019)

Internews Karachi: Troubled Pakistan’s economy is feared to face a shockwave as most global economic data harbouring an undercurrent recession shows it could hurt the country’s export sector and impede remittance inflows, analysts and economists said. But, some of them also find rescuer to feeble external account position in downward trend in oil prices.
Former finance … Read More

Aid cut improved ties with Pakistan: Trump

The Dawn (Aug 20, 2019)

WASHINGTON: US President Donald Trump has said his country’s ties with Pakistan have improved since he cut $1.3 billion in security assistance to Islamabad, rejecting the suggestion that aid is an effective foreign policy tool. Talking to reporters at his golf resort in New Jersey on Sunday evening, the US leader also recalled his July 22 meeting with Prime Minister Imran… Read More

Govt. will announce Rs.900 billion development budget for the next year: Special Assistant to PM

The (Aug 19, 2019)

Special Assistant to the PM on Political Affairs Naeemul Haq while expressing his view on the government’s first-year performance report said that the government will announce Rs. 900 billion development budget for the next year against Rs. 500 billion of the current year. PTI govt while presenting the report claimed that the country had been put on the right track and people would start getting… Read More

A year in economy

The News (Aug 19, 2019)

One year ago, there was great hope when the PTI took power. Despite some very familiar faces splattered across the party, Pakistan was getting a brand new prime minister and finance minister. Imran Khan and Asad Umar took over the difficult task of steering Pakistan’s economy on August 18, 2018. On April 18, 2019, only seven months in, Asad Umar was gone. For half a decade, the PTI had insisted… Read More

Of 19 budgets since 2000, only five were deficit

The Express Tribune (Aug 18, 2019)

PESHAWAR: The budget outlay of the Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa (K-P) has shown that out of 19 years of provincial budgets, five budgets have been listed deficits, while 14 of them have been found to be surplus budgets in the ongoing years, starting from the year 2000. The documents released from the federal finance ministry related to Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa’s budgets since the beginning… Read More

Pakistani premier’s first year: economic hit and miss

The Dawn (Aug 18, 2019)

Mohammad Tariq was one of the millions of Pakistanis who voted in the July 2018 elections for first-time Prime Minister Imran Khan and his campaign to build a corruption-free Islamic welfare state, better employment and civic amenities. But for Tariq, things have even gone from bad to worse during the first year of Prime Minister Imran’s government. Unlike his predecessor… Read More

FBR constitutes committee to finalise tax regime for traders

The Express Tribune (Aug 17, 2019)

ISLAMABAD: The Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) on Friday constituted a committee to finalise a new income tax regime for traders, as the government and the traders remain poles apart over the key issue of disclosing their identity for trading purposes. The 15-member committee has been directed to finalise a “fixed tax scheme for small traders/shopkeepers and simplified… Read More

Foreign exchange: SBP reserves rise 6.93% to $8.26b

The Express Tribune (Aug 17, 2019)

KARACHI: The foreign exchange reserves held by the central bank increased 6.93% on a weekly basis, according to data released by the State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) on Saturday. Earlier, the reserves had spiralled downwards, falling below the $7-billion mark, which raised concern over Pakistan’s ability to meet its financing requirements. However, financial assistance from the United Arab Emirates…Read More

Indonesia president proposes $178bn budget for 2020 with focus on education

Pakistan Today (Aug 16, 2019)

JAKARTA: Indonesian President Joko Widodo on Friday proposed a 2,528.8 trillion rupiah ($177.56 billion) budget to parliament for 2020, focusing spending on human resources, which was central in his re-election campaign. The 2020 budget proposals set a target of 5.3pc growth in gross domestic product (GDP), the same as this year’s, although officials have often said 2019 growth would probably… Read More

US Aid to Pakistan reduced by $440 million

The Global Village Space (Aug 16, 2019)

News Desk |The United States has made further reductions in the aid delivered to Pakistan, reducing it by $440 million as per the commitments made under the Kerry Lugar Berman Act. The current aid is $4.1 billion, which is slightly more than half of the total amount that was promised to Islamabad in 2010. The aid was allocated to Pakistan under the Kerry Lugar Berman Act in 2009, and the… Read More

Pakistan’s economic situation is changing: Reza Baqir

The Pakistan Today (Aug 15, 2019)

KARACHI: Pakistan’s economy is facing with a number of problems and uncertainty but the situation is changing, said State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) Governor Reza Baqir on Wednesday while addressing the flag hoisting ceremony held at the State Bank Building to celebrate the country’s 73rd Independence Day. Baqir admitted that the economy is weak, unemployment is rising and inflation is… Read More

De-notify Debt Inquiry Commission immediately

The Express Tribune (Aug 14, 2019)

ISLAMABAD: According to a news story, the Debt Inquiry Commission has questioned the Ministry of Privatisation and the Ministry of Energy over the closure of Pakistan Steel Mills (PSM) and the decision to privatise liquefied natural gas (LNG)-fired power plants. Haveli Bahadur Shah and Balloki power plants, which were based on LNG, were set up during the tenure of previous Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz… Read More

IMF conditionality: government repays Rs 1.3 trillion to SBP

The Business Recorder (Aug 14, 2019)

The federal government has repaid some Rs 1.3 trillion to the State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) in the first month of this fiscal year (FY19) to meet the International Monetary Fund (IMF) condition. While, obtaining a 36-month $6 billion bailout package, Pakistan has agreed with the IMF that financing from SBP for budget deficit will be eliminated to support the new monetary policy framework as the Fund… Read More

A $1 trillion US budget deficit is one big reason the Fed may have to cut rates

The CNBC News (Aug 13, 2019)

If low inflation, a wobbly economy and tariff jitters weren’t enough to push the Federal Reserve to lower interest rates, there’s also the simple reason of the swelling national debt. The recent debt deal struck between the White House and Congress virtually guarantees trillion-dollar deficits well into the future as well as continued acceleration of the government’s collective IOU, which is now… Read More

Govt converts short-term debt into long term bonds

The Express Tribune (Aug 11, 2019)

ISLAMABAD: The federal government has restructured its short-term domestic debt by quietly issuing long-term Pakistan Investment Bonds (PIBs) to the central bank, dramatically increasing the share of long-term debt to Rs15.3 trillion or 74% of the total domestic debt. The conversion of federal government’s short-term borrowings from the central bank into… Read More

Pakistan receives $500 million as ADB bets on economic recovery

The News (Aug 11, 2019)

KARACHI: Pakistan has received $500 million in loan from the Asian Development Bank (ADB) as the policy-based lending from the lender resumed after having remained suspended for two years due to ‘extremely high macroeconomic imbalances’, a minister said on Saturday. Minister for Economic Affairs Hammad Azhar said the first tranche of $500 million has been received from the ADB. Manila-based… Read More

Overseas Pakistanis send home $2.03 billion in July

The Express Tribune (Aug 10, 2019)

KARACHI: In line with market expectations, Pakistan received higher remittance inflows worth $2.03 billion from overseas Pakistanis in the first month – July – of the current fiscal year 2019-20 ahead of Eidul Azha. The inflows were almost 3% higher than the $1.98 billion received in the same month last year. July was also followed by Eidul Azha in the preceding year…Read More

Public debt skyrockets to Rs 31.8tr in FY19

The Express Tribune (Aug 10, 2019)

ISLAMABAD: In a dangerous development, the federal government added Rs7.6 trillion to public debt in the last fiscal year, which skyrocketed to Rs31.8 trillion by the end of June and it was equal to 71% of the total debt that the PML-N government had taken in its five-year term.
The addition to public debt in the previous fiscal year was also more than the total public debt that the… Read More

Pakistan suspends trade ties with India. Who gains, who loses from Imran Khan’s move

The India Today (Aug 09, 2019)

NEW DELHI: Relations between India and Pakistan worsened on Wednesday when Pakistan decided to downgrade diplomatic ties with India, recall its high commissioner from New Delhi, expel the Indian envoy to Islamabad and suspend bilateral trade. These decisions were taken at a high-level meeting chaired by Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan in… Read More

IMF package to bring economic stability

The Nation (Aug 09, 2019)

PESHAWAR – Resident representative of the International Monetary Fund (IMF), Pakistan Office, Ms Maria Teresa Daban Sanchez has made it clear that the harsh budgetary measures taken by the government of Pakistan in the recent budget are not part of the IMF fresh financial bailout package. While speaking in a meeting here at Sarhad Chamber of Commerce and Industry (SCCI), Ms … Read More