No IMF please

An incapable team, lack of experience, absence of a clear economic policy and the habit of taking u-turns by the PTI government have arguably taken toll on the economy and masses. Besides other reasons for the PTI’s failure on the economic front, a repeated reshuffle in the cabinet made it vulnerable to criticism. Shaukat Tarin is the fourth appointee for the coveted position of finance minister in two years, who was vested with the responsibility to steer the country’s tattered economy. Tarin, who is busy wooing the International Monetary Fund (IMF) for a bail-out package, has announced that a deal will soon be signed with the IMF. Previously, it was the PTI chief Imran Khan, who used to make tall claims of not taking loans from the IMF to revert economic recession. But now his finance advisor proudly makes public the news about signing a deal for revival of the $6 billion Extended Fund Facility.

Undoubtedly, it will be an absolute disaster for the country to get deeper into IMF clutches. Their aim is to choke the economy so that it is unable to flourish, and remains dependent on the IMF/World Bank financial system which is controlling most of the world. Unfortunately, most of our so-called economists are trained to think within the box, and cannot be expected to produce anything original or meaningful. On the other hand, Russia and China are emerging as independent economies, and it would be prudent for us to lean more towards them as economic partners, rather than abrogating our economic sovereignty to the so-called IMF. The IMF has always imposed such money-collection measures on us that struck at the very roots of our economic growth potential so that by the time one IMF programme is completed, another one of double proportion becomes necessary. And this vicious circle has been going on for the last many decades. Our Forex reserves have continued to fall, our dependence on imported petroleum is continuing to multiply, cost of electricity escalating dangerously. In short, we never have hard currency reserves which make our sovereignty extremely vulnerable. We are over-dependent on foreign borrowings and they have placed us under covert sanctions. Earlier, the PTI had promised to get the country out of this whirlpool of problems, but they seem to be following the old rutted path leading us nowhere.