Govt has 10 months, enough for political comeback, says Ishaq Dar

Had to choose between saving nation or politics; we knew its consequences but opted for state

Finance Minister Ishaq Dar has said that the government had 10 months that were long enough to stage a political comeback.

Speaking at a press conference at the Pakistan Embassy in Washington, Ishaq Dar said that they had to choose between saving the nation or their politics; further elaborating that they also knew that it would have consequences but they had opted for the state.

Answering the questions about the result of by-polls held on Sunday, he said that the parties in the coalition government had moved for a vote of no confidence because not doing so would have disastrous consequences for Pakistan. He said that allowing the previous government would have been worse than the floods.

Answering questions about US president’s statement about Pakistan’s nuclear program, he said, “When a politician who has been a PM says the nuclear programme was good under me, but not now, this is how the world would react,” he added. “You should condemn him; he is doing petty politics.”

Dar told that he had held 58 meetings with chiefs of international financial institutions along with Saudi Arabian, US and other officials during four days. He also told that the World Bank and Britain hosted a roundtable on floods in which a joint report was presented by UNDP and ADB according to which a total loss of over $32.4 billion was caused to Pakistan.

He also said that the date of a donors’ conference on floods was being finalized, to be held in France.

The finance minister said that Pakistan, meeting all obligations, will complete the current IMF program. He said that about five percent to 10 percent of work was related to the reforms and would be completed soon.

He stated that Pakistan got out of FATF Grey List in 2015 under the PML-N government and would do that again.

He said that donors did not mind targeted subsidies and perhaps IMF officials had referred to electricity subsidies.

Ishaq Dar blamed the PTI government for the current economic situation. He said, “Pakistan’s economy is a man-made disaster. Their incompetency and their misgovernance caused it. We are here to save the economy, not to do politics. May God accept our sacrifice.”

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