ISLAMABAD: International Monetary Fund (IMF) Managing Director Kristalina Georgieva said on Friday her organization had been consistently communicating the need for Pakistani authorities to generate more tax revenue from wealthier social segments while protecting the underprivileged classes in the country.
The top IMF official made the comment during a brief interaction with a Pakistani reporter on the sidelines of the 78th United Nations General Assembly session in New York.
Her statement comes against the backdrop of spiraling inflation in Pakistan which has primarily affected the poor. The government has consistently attributed the increasing cost of living in the country to stringent economic reforms recommended by the international lender while approving a $3 billion bailout in June.
“Let me send a simple message to everybody in Pakistan,” she said while speaking to Geo News correspondent. “What we are asking in our program is please collect more taxes from the wealthy and please protect the poor people of Pakistan.”
“I do believe that this is in line with what people in Pakistan would like to see for the country,” she added.
The IMF chief acknowledged the conditions laid down by her organization to revitalize Pakistan’s economy and address the mistakes of the past were not easy to implement.
However, she maintained they were in the interest of the people of Pakistan.
Georgieva statement comes following her meeting with Prime Minister Anwaar-ul-Haq Kakar on Tuesday in which she was briefed on measures taken by the country’s interim administration to stabilize the economy.
The IMF asked Pakistan to raise energy prices and following market-driven exchange rate which made the CPI hit a record 38 percent this year and the national currency plummet to all-time lows.
Kakar said he had a “constructive dialogue” with the IMF chief who, in turn, said there was an agreement to follow policies to ensure stability and foster sustainable and inclusive growth in Pakistan.