ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister Imran Khan on Tuesday hailed financial assistance that Pakistan has received from Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates (UAE) and China to prop up its stumbling economy and plug its depleted reserves.
In a speech televised late on Tuesday night following the presentation of the budget proposal for the fiscal year to June 2020, Khan said the three friendly countries had stood by Pakistan in times of economic difficulty.
Revenue Minister Hammad Azhar also underlined the importance of the financial aid received from Saudi Arabia, UAE and China while presenting the budget proposal in the National Assembly on Tuesday.
“We borrowed a total of $9.2 billion from China, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, and the United Arab Emirates,” Azhar said.
Last year, Saudi Arabia gave Pakistan $3 billion in foreign currency support along with a $3 billion facility for deferred payments for oil imports. The prime minister’s adviser on finance, Abdul Hafeez Shaikh, confirmed last month that Saudi Arabia would activate the deferred oil payment facility from July 1, 2019 under which Islamabad will receive $3.2 billion per year for three years.
Islamabad also received $3 billion in economic assistance from the UAE in December 2018 while all-weather friend China lent $2.2 billion in March this year. Beijing is also investing close to $60 billion in Pakistan under the China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) of infrastructure and energy projects.