As of July 19, 2023, Islamabad on Wednesday, Bilal Azhar Kayani, the prime minister’s coordinator for economy and energy, firmly asserted that the government had no plans to impose new taxes on the revenue from the agricultural sector.
He stressed during a news conference that the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) is dedicated to guiding the nation toward economic stability and advancement following the upcoming general elections.
The successful conclusion of a nine-month Stand By Agreement (SBA) with the International Monetary Fund (IMF), which won resounding national support, was credited by Kayani to the diligent work of Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif. He emphasized the upbeat economic data, such as the Pakistan Stock Exchange’s spectacular rise of 2446 points on July 3 which saw it surpass the 45,000-point threshold, and Fitch’s upgrade of Pakistan’s credit rating.
The coordinator recognized reservations about IMF loans but insisted that they were essential for the nation’s economic health and would enhance foreign reserves and maintain exchange rates. In addition, Pakistan has received considerable financial aid from Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates (UAE), and China.
Kayani denounced attempts by some individuals to use petty politics to harm the country’s economy. He emphasized that the agriculture industry has not been subject to any new levies and gave the assurance that the socially disadvantaged classes are receiving financial aid under the social protection program.
The government is also concentrating on development and repair projects in flood-affected areas. He criticized the distribution of incorrect information about the IMF program, especially the assertions that there will be higher taxes.
The budget has been altered by the government to lower spending while raising funding for the Benazir Income Support Programme (BISP).
The coordinator emphasized the government’s dedication to reform implementation and economic stability. Making the decision to join the IMF program was essential to preventing negative effects on the general populace, particularly the economically disadvantaged groups. He criticized special interests for undermining the IMF deal in order to make things tough for the recently elected government and bring Pakistan close to going into default. Kayani emphasized that the PML-N had previously completed an IMF program effectively and achieved economic stability through efficient governance and policy-making throughout its tenure.
In order to grow revenues and raise living standards for those segments of society that are most vulnerable to economic hardship, the government is currently concentrating on measures to promote investment, with a special focus on industries like agriculture and information technology.