ISLAMABAD: While speaking to a private news channel, Finance Minister Miftah Ismail revealed that the government had no choice but to lift petroleum subsidies as the country was on the verge of bankruptcy.
He also pointed to another possible rise in petroleum prices. He added that the International Monetary Fund (IMF) had demanded of the government to lift subsidies by July.
Miftah explained as to why the government had to take such decisions, stating that if prices were not hiked, the IMF would not lend money to Pakistan, resulting in economic destruction. He further said that Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif felt unhappy with the decision and cursed him every time he forwarded the summary to increase prices.
According to Miftah, Srilanka defaulted because of providing subsidies to the public. He also said that citizens of Pakistan were receiving a Rs19 subsidy on petrol and Rs53 on diesel. He then talked about international prices and pointed out that the rise in oil & coal prices had also hiked electricity costs.
Miftah also hinted that the gas prices might also increase as the department was facing a Rs1,500 billion circular debt.
Since the coalition government has come into power, Pakistan has been under the threat of going bankrupt yet the leadership has failed to take timely measures to mitigate or completely thwart the looming economic crisis.