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Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif to negotiate a new loan agreement with the IMF mission

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Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif is expected to meet the International Monetary Fund (IMF) mission next week to discuss a new loan programme.

Sources said the prime minister is expected to discuss the possibility of securing additional funding from the lender.

During the meeting, the lender will seek assurances from Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif on targets in the new loan program.

Sources added that these discussions will deal with the continuation of strict economic policies in the budget for the coming financial year.

Meanwhile, negotiations between Pakistan and the International Monetary Fund (IMF) for a fresh loan have started in Islamabad today.

Pakistan is seeking a bailout package of between $6 and $8 billion from the international lender for three to four years to address its financial problems.

A mission team led by Nathan Porter, the IMF’s Head of Mission to Pakistan is holding talks with the delegation from Pakistan led by Finance Minister Muhammad Aurangzeb.

Sources familiar with the development said Islamabad may have to take tougher decisions including increasing electricity and gas tariffs.

Briefing the IMF delegation, Mr. Aurganzeb said that the country’s economy has improved after the IMF loan package and Islamabad is ready to sign a new loan program for further improvement.

The IMF’s current visit to Pakistan is expected to last at least two weeks.

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