While attending a conference in Geneva commencing Monday, a delegation from the International Monetary Fund (IMF) will meet with Pakistan’s finance minister Ishaq Dar as that country battles to restart its bailout programme.

Cash-strapped Pakistan is in dire need of aid and only has enough foreign exchange reserves to cover one month’s worth of imports as IMF didn’t authorise the release of $1.1 billion that was originally scheduled to be paid out in November of last year, Al Jazeera reported.

“The IMF delegation is expected to meet with finance minister Dar on the sidelines of the Geneva conference to discuss outstanding issues and the path forward,” an IMF spokesperson told Reuters on Sunday.

According to IMF spokesperson, the institution’s Managing Director Kristalina Georgieva had a “constructive call” with Pakistan Prime Minister Shahbaz Sharif on Friday. “The MD again expressed her sympathy to those directly affected by the floods and supported Pakistan’s efforts to build a more resilient recovery,” the spokesperson told Dawn.


The goal of the International Conference on Climate Resilient Pakistan in Geneva, which is being co-hosted by Sharif and UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres, is to rally support for the nation in the wake of last year’s disastrous floods on a global scale.

In recent months, Dar has criticised the IMF, openly stating that the institution was behaving “abnormally” in its interactions with Pakistan, which, in 2019, entered the $7 billion bailout programme.

Watch | Pakistan floods: 33 million people affected

IMF declined to grant the next installment of the already-agreed credit since Pakistan was not keeping its end of the bargain when the halted loan of $6 billion was reinstated last year.

More than six months of flooding, driven by global warming, has left some districts of Pakistan devastated and the fundamental necessities of the locals are still unmet. At least 1,700 people were killed by the floods, and vital infrastructure suffered billion-dollar losses, as per Al Jazeera.

According to a UN report published in December, 8 million people were “possibly exposed to floodwaters or living close to flooded areas,” while 240,000 people in Sindh, a province in southern Pakistan, remain homeless.


(With inputs from agencies)




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