Cash-starved Pakistan to get $8 bn Saudi aid

Wednesday 04th May 2022 07:29 EDT

Islamabad: Saudi Arabia has agreed to provide cash-starved Pakistan with a “sizeable package” of around $8 billion aid to bolster dwindling forex reserves and revive its ailing economy. Pakistan has faced growing economic challenges, with high inflation, sliding forex reserves, a widening current account deficit and a depreciating currency.

Pakistan secured the deal during the visit of PM Shehbaz Sharif to Saudi Arabia. The financial package includes doubling of the oil financing facility, additional money either through deposits or Sukuks and rolling over of the existing $4.2 billion facilities, the News paper reported. “However, technical details are being worked out and it will take a couple of weeks to get all documents ready,” the report said.

Pakistan had proposed doubling the oil facility from $1.2 billion to $2.4 billion and Saudi Arabia agreed to it. It was also agreed that the existing deposits of $3 billion would be rolled over for an extended period of up to June 2023, according to an official. “Pakistan and Saudi Arabia discussed an additional package of over $2 billion either through deposits or Sukuk and it is likely that more money will be provided to Islamabad,” the report said, adding that the size of the total package will be determined when the additional money is finalised.

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