Pakistan’s economy to grow by 2.5% till 2024: IMF outlook

ISLAMABAD: The International Monetary Fund (IMF) has said Pakistan’s economy will grow at an average rate of just 2.5% till Year 2024 if the reforms proposed by it will not implemented.

“In Pakistan, in the absence of further adjustment policies, growth is projected to remain subdued at about 2.5 percent, with continued external and fiscal imbalances weighing on confidence”, the IMF said in its economic outlook.

The IMF officials said that the lender was in talks with Pakistan for a three-year bailout package.

A delegation of Pakistan’s economic officials led by Finance Minister Asad Umar, has been in Washington to attend the IMF session, which will continue until April 14.

In its flagship World Economic Outlook, the IMF projects mid-term growth prospects for Pakistan to remain subdued at 2.5 percent by 2024. The next year growth rate forecast by the fund was in line with 2.7 percent growth rate projected by the World Bank earlier. The IMF has forecast 2.9 percent growth rate for the current fiscal year in comparison to the World Bank’s 3.6 percent.

According to the IMF outlook the economy of Pakistan will grow by 2.8 percent in the next fiscal year. The fund attributed negative outlook to fuel prices and macroeconomic challenges and the impact of the slowdown in global economy.

The fund projected consumer price index in Pakistan at 7.6 percent during the current fiscal year, slowing down to seven percent next fiscal year and then stabilising to five percent by 2024.

The fund has estimated Pakistan’s current account deficit at 5.2 percent of the GDP during the current year going down to 4.3 percent next year before surging again to 5.4 percent by 2024.

The unemployment rate projected to stay at 6.1 percent during the current year, 6.2 percent next year and remain in the same level by 2024.

The IMF in its medium-term outlook for the Middle East, North Africa, Afghanistan, and Pakistan notes that the region was largely shaped by the outlook for fuel prices, needed adjustment to correct macroeconomic imbalances in certain economies and geopolitical tensions. – NNI


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