Rumours of Pakistan’s default risk based on ‘malicious campaign’ by PTI: Ahsan Iqbal

Planning Minister Ahsan Iqbal on Sunday categorically dismissed rumours related to Pakistan’s default risks, terming them the “PTI’s propaganda” for mere politicking.

His remarks come after former premier Imran Khan and his party members raised alarms about the economic situation and alleged that the government is not able to control it.

In an address at the Pakistani Consulate in Jeddah today, Iqbal said the government had adopted a path of stability and saved the country from going towards a default.

“The news about Pakistan’s default risk is based on a malicious campaign initiated by the PTI which has no reality.”

The planning minister said the incumbent government, under the leadership of Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif, had succeeded in removing Pakistan from the Financial Action Task Force’s grey list.

“The PTI destroyed the country’s economy which led to an economic crisis but the incumbent government has improved the economy by following the agreement with the IMF (International Monetary Fund) and for the last six months, Pakistan has adopted a path of stability,” Iqbal said.

On overseas Pakistanis, the minister said the government would soon introduce a death insurance scheme for them to provide support to their families in case of accidental death.

He added that the government supported their right to vote but it should be implemented without compromising the sanctity and security of the electoral process.

“There is no secure Internet-based voting system in use in the world yet. However, various proposals are under consideration, including the proposal to give representation to overseas Pakistanis through specific seats in Parliament,” the minister said.

He also lauded the role of the Pakistani community in the socio-economic development of the country and termed them as “lifelines”.

The minister further added that Pakistan had a “long-standing and brotherly relationship” with Saudi Arabia which would continue with the same spirit.

“We want to establish CPEC-style (China-Pakistan Economic Corridor) economic cooperation with Saudi Arabia,” he said, adding that China and Saudi Arabia were offered joint investment opportunities under CPEC.

“Overseas [Pakistanis] based in Saudi Arabia are a strategic partner of Pakistan and their efforts are commendable which helps Pakistan to promote their narrative,” the minister said.

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