IMF approves $500 million disbursement to Pakistan – Metro US

IMF approves $500 million disbursement to Pakistan

FILE PHOTO: The IMF logo is seen outside the headquarters
FILE PHOTO: The IMF logo is seen outside the headquarters building in Washington

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The International Monetary Fund said on Wednesday it approved a $500 million disbursement to Pakistan for budget support after the IMF Executive Board completed delayed reviews of Pakistan’s $6 billion loan program.

The IMF said in a statement that the latest payment brought total disbursements under the Extended Fund Facility to $2 billion since the program was first approved in July 2019.

“The Pakistani authorities have continued to make satisfactory progress under the Fund-supported program, which has been an important policy anchor during an unprecedented period,” IMF Deputy Managing Director Antoinette Sayeh said in a statement.

“While the Covid-19 pandemic continues to pose challenges, the authorities’ policies have been critical in supporting the economy and saving lives and livelihoods,” she said.

The disbursement was made after Pakistan cleared up an issue with data on government guarantees dating back to the 2016 fiscal year that had been reported inaccurately and put the government in non-compliance with the program.

The IMF said Pakistani authorities had taken strong corrective actions to address institutional shortcomings, including a lack of interagency coordination, to correct the issue.

(Reporting by David Lawder; Editing by Leslie Adler and Peter Cooney)