KARACHI: Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) chairman Bilawal Bhutto-Zardari on Monday asked the prime minister to explain as to why his government was compelled to repay Saudi Arabia’s $3 billion loan, and what it was going to cost the nation for taking a commercial loan from China to repay the Saudi soft loan.
“Imran Khan had promised to break Pakistan free from the debt trap, but since coming to power he has buried Pakistan under massive loans, taking the begging bowl everywhere he goes,” he said in a statement.
“He [Imran Khan] has extensive experience in soliciting alms and donations but countries do not, cannot and should not run on donations. The life of the common man in Pakistan has become unbearable due to the poor economic policies of Imran Khan’s regime. With the per capita debt now at Rs175,000, every Pakistani is paying the price for Imran Khan’s incompetence.”
Wonders what compulsion the govt faced to repay Saudi Arabia’s $3bn loan
He said that common people would continue to suffer unprecedented inflation, poverty and unemployment if the federal government pushed Pakistan further into debt and compounded it with corruption and mismanagement.
Due to circular debt issue, the government had been unable to keep its financial commitments to international partners, putting projects such as CPEC at risk, he said.
“The hesitation of the Chinese government in releasing the committed $6 billion fund for the ML-1 railway track is in fact an expression of distrust in the PTI regime,” the PPP leader said, adding that Chinese companies investing in Pakistan had also apprised the Chinese government of their distrust of the PTI government.
The PPP chairman further said that the “puppet prime minister” had created a climate where foreign investors and governments had become reluctant to invest in Pakistan and engage with the federal government.
Published in Dawn, May 11th, 2021