Pakistan’s economy undergoing heart bypass surgery: Asad Umar

Finance Minister Asad Umar on Friday said Pakistan’s economy is in a critical phase but will soon be back on track.
“The economy is currently undergoing heart bypass surgery and after it is successfully completed, the economy will be back on track and running,” the finance minister said while addressing an Islamabad Chamber of Commerce and Industry (ICCI) event.
Regarding ongoing talks with the International Monetary Fund (IMF), Umar said, “They are part of routine.”
“There is no plan to seek a bailout just yet,” he added.
“However, if we need to approach IMF for a bailout then the talks that are taking place right now will be form the basis for it,” Umar further said.
An IMF mission is currently on a week-long visit to the country and the first day of talks between Pakistani officials and the delegation concluded in Islamabad on Thursday.
The finance secretary led Pakistani side during the talks in Islamabad, while country director Herald Finger headed the IMF delegation.
Sources said that Thursday’s talks were post-programme and staff-level, and added that similar rounds of talks were held in Washington during the caretaker government’s tenure.
Stating that the talks will continue for a week, the sources added that Thursday’s meeting reviewed the challenges facing Pakistan.