Pakistan has formally requested the International Monetary Fund for the financial assistance to help address country’s economic challenges, Christine Lagarde, Managing Director IMF said in a statement Thursday.
Lagarde said in a statement that the request came during her meeting with Finance Minister Asad Umar and State Bank Governor Tariq Bajwa on the sidelines of the IMF and World Bank annual meetings in Bali.
“Today, I met with Pakistan’s Minister of Finance, Revenue and Economic Affairs, Asad Umar, Governor of the State Bank of Pakistan Tariq Bajwa, and members of their economic team. During the meeting, they requested financial assistance from the IMF to help address Pakistan’s economic challenges,” the statement added without mentioning further details.
“An IMF team will visit Islamabad in the coming weeks to initiate discussions for a possible IMF-supported economic program. We look forward to our continuing partnership,” it added.
Earlier today, the IMF chief said she would meet with Pakistani officials with expectations that Islamabad will request a bailout of its shaky economy.
Lagarde said the IMF was yet to receive anything formal from Islamabad but that she and other IMF officials would meet with the Pakistani delegation in Bali on Thursday afternoon.
"I’m assuming that there might be a programme request on their part, but that has not been discussed and we will explore that this afternoon," she told a press briefing.
Prime Minister Imran Khan on Wednesday vowed to steer the country out of a looming balance-of-payments crisis, saying it needs $10-12 billion.
"We will get out of this. I will take (the country) out of this," he said.
PM Imran's new administration took office in August vowing to weigh up whether to seek an IMF bailout as it sought other avenues of financing.