Minister for Information and Broadcasting Marriyum Aurangzeb on Monday released a chart highlighting overall performance of both the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (2013-18) and the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (2018-22) governments.
The statistical chart draws a comparative analysis of both the parties, summing up the tenure of PML-N as a period of high economic growth, low inflation and unemployment rates, reduction in poverty, corruption and debts, increase in tax collection, and drop in the trade and fiscal deficits.
In a startling contrast, the report showed that the PTI’s regime was marred with low economic growth, highest ever inflation, extreme rise in unemployment, poverty, debt and corruption, decline in tax collection and surge in the trade and fiscal deficits.
The minister, in a news statement, said that in 2018 when the PML-N tenure ended, dollar-rupee parity stood at Rs116, but when the PTI regime was removed through vote of no-confidence one dollar was equal to Rs189.
At the end of PML-N tenure in 2018, she said the GDP growth rate was at 6.1 per cent, but Imran brought it to negative, which was now expected at 4 per cent, she said.
“Inflation rate in 2018 was only 3.4 per cent, which climbed to 13 per cent by the end of PTI rule. Likewise, food inflation, which was only 2.3 per cent in 2018, rose to 15 per cent by end of PTI tenure,” she said.
Marriyum said a 20kg sack of flour in Nawaz Sharif’s era was sold at Rs700, while its rate jumped to Rs1,100 during the tenure of the PTI. Sugar price, which was Rs53 per kilo in 2018, reached the mark of Rs90 after the end of PTI tenure, she added.
One kilo ghee was available at Rs 151 in 2018 but its price was Rs470 when the PTI government was sent home, she added.
She said electricity tariff per unit was Rs11 in 2018, but it reached Rs25 at the end of PTI tenure, and gas price per mmbtu in 2018 was Rs600 and in April this year it reached Rs1,400.
The minister said fiscal deficit stood at Rs2,260 billion when the PML-N tenure ended in 2018, and it climbed to Rs5,600 billion by the time the PTI regime was removed. The trade deficit was $30.9 billion in PML-N era, while it jumped to $43 billion in Imran’s era, she said.
She said the GDP-to-tax ratio was 11.2 per cent in 2018 whereas it fell to 9.2 per cent by April 2022.
From 1947 to 2018, she said all the governments together obtained loans worth Rs24,953 billion but the national debt rose to Rs42,745 billion during the PTI tenure.
There were 3.5 million unemployed persons in Pakistan when PML-N tenure ended in 2018, and in April 2022 there were 9.5 million unemployed persons, which meant an increase of 6 million unemployed people in the tenure of PTI, she said.
She said Pakistan’s rating in the Transparency International Index of corruption climbed 23 points during PTI rule as it was 117 in 2018 and reached 140 by the time PTI was removed.
The minister asked Imran as to why the ranking of Pakistan went up 23 points during the PTI rule.
She said the people of Pakistan were fully aware of the fact that Imran Khan was responsible for the present economic woes and unemployment in the country.