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An International Monetary Fund (IMF) mission, led by Ernesto Ramirez Rigo, visited Islamabad
during February 3-13, to initiate discussions on the second review of the authorities’ economic
reform program supported under the Extended Fund Facility (EFF) arrangement (see Press
Release No. 19/264). At the conclusion of the visit, Mr. Ramirez Rigo made the following
statement:

“The IMF staff team had constructive and productive discussions with the Pakistani authorities
and commended them on the considerable progress made during the last few months in
advancing reforms and continuing with sound economic policies. The mission and the authorities
made significant progress in the discussions on policies and reforms. In the coming days progress
will continue to pave the way for the IMF Executive Board’s consideration of the review.
“The macroeconomic outlook remains broadly as expected at the time of the first review.

Economic activity has stabilized and remains on the path of gradual recovery. The current
account deficit has declined, helped by the real exchange rate that is now broadly in line with
fundamentals, while international reserves continue to rebuild at a pace considerably faster than
anticipated. Inflation should start to see a declining trend as the pass-through of exchange rate
depreciation has been absorbed and supply-side constraints appear to be temporary. Fiscal
performance in the first half of the fiscal year remained strong, with the general government
registering a primary surplus of 0.7 percent of GDP on the back of strong domestic tax revenue
growth. Development and social spending have been accelerated.”