Abdul Hafeez Shaikh Adviser to the Prime Minister on Finance on Thursday said that Pakistan by incoming into a contract with the International Monetary Fund (IMF) was sending a message to the world that its government will show accountability in monitoring its expenses and will mobilize taxes from its wealthy people.
He was addressing a press conference a day later the Executive Board of the IMF agreed a $6 billion bailout package for Pakistan and instantaneously released $1bn to comfort a sustained stress on the country’s foreign exchange reserves.
“We will take difficult decisions,” Shaikh said, adding that measures will be taken to protect the vulnerable segments of society. He said the government had in its recently unveiled budget raised allocations for the poor classes and women and provided incentives for the business community.
Terming the IMF decision as “very important”, he said international forces and institutions will be satisfied to note that “Pakistan has been given a show of support by an institution whose basic objective is to assist its member states at a time when they need help.”
He said the PTI government had congenital a debt of approximately $31,000 billion and the economic managers had taken numerous decisions to return these loans, one of which was approaching the IMF.
Talking with the media about the recently concluded assets declaration scheme of the government, the finance adviser said the main objective of the scheme was to increase the number of forthcoming taxpayers and allow people to purify their money.
A total of 137,000 people registered for the tax amnesty scheme, Shaikh exposed, adding that the number was the highest for any scheme in Pakistan’s country and included over 100,000 people who were formerly non-filers.
He added, the citizens deposited nearly Rs70 billion in taxes and acknowledged about Rs3,000 billion worth of assets under the programme.