Aaj English TV

Wednesday, February 28, 2024  
17 Shaban 1445  

Geopolitics, govt attitude or elections timings? What delayed IMF deal

Election likely in November as govt plans to capitalize on post-May 9 resentment
Government’s Economic Plan, Army Chief’s Assurance - Faisla Aap Ka wit Asma Shirazi

Journalist Shahbaz Rana has said that the government’s attitude was the reason for a delay in the agreement with the International Monetary Fund rather than ‘geopolitics’ as claimed by Finance Minister Ishaq Dar.

“There was no such thing as geopolitics. The government had not met the conditions of the IMF which held the funds only due to this reason. If they [government] had taken it seriously, the agreement would have been reached six months ago and our previous programme would not have failed,” he said while speaking with Asma Shirazi on Aaj News show Faisla Aap Ka.

He claimed that the finance ministry and the prime minister office were “not on a same page” regarding the deal with the global lending institution.

“There was no discussion [by government] regarding the programme till June 25. The new programme was negotiated with the IMF in the last week of June,” Rana stated.

Federal Minister for Power Khurram Dastgir Khan disagreed with Rana, saying that geopolitics were underway in Pakistan’s negotiations with the IMF.

“Pakistan had been securing relief from the IMF in the past due to geopolitics. After the evacuation of western forces from Afghanistan, the IMF’s attitude has become strict with Pakistan,” he added.

He said that the assemblies will be dissolved on time while the general elections will be held in November this year. “Nawaz Sharif will lead the PML-N’s election campaign and will be elected as the prime minister for the fourth time.”

He went on to add that the national elections will be held based on the population census of 2017. There are reservation of the coalition partners on the census of 2023, due to which the government is trying to avoid any controversy, he added.

Responding to a question regarding Israel’s statement on the country’s political situation, the minister said that Israel has never commented on the internal matter of Pakistan before.

“Israel never raised voice against military coups in Pakistan and the persecution of PML-N leaders. We should ask that why Israel now needed to comment on Pakistan’s internal matters,” he added.

While discussing the deal with IMF, political analyst Mansoor Ali Khan said that the government was unsure about the economic policies before the May 9 riots, including its negotiations with the IMF and holding elections in the country.

“The delay in the IMF programme was due to political reasons as the government did not know what to do. The coalition government had no idea when it will hold elections before the May 9 riots happened. They [government] believe that now is the time,” he added.

The government is also been advised to hold elections on time as they feel the resentment that built up after May 9, will cool down if polls are delayed in the country, Khan stated.

Khan showed disagreement with the government’s claims that PTI is in a nexus with Israel, saying that he cannot support such claims without evidence.

“We have seen similar accusations against the PML-N as the former PTI government alleged that the party is backed by Indian lobby and Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi. We cannot say that PTI is in an alliance with Israel based on a statement,” he added.

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Nawaz Sharif

Ishaq Dar



general election

Shehbaz Rana

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