The Government of Pakistan is looking forward to secure loans amounting to $12 billion from the World Bank over a period of five years as part of a new partnership strategy. The international lender is expected to approve of the loans by May of this year.
As reported by The Express Tribune, a discussion took place between Minister for Economic Affairs Makhdoom Khusro Bakhtiar and World Bank Country Director Najy Benhassine over the country’s development priorities for the next five years.
According to the report, a senior ministry official said that there were no firm financial commitments by the World Bank at this stage. He said that based on Pakistan’s quota, budget support needs and borrowings by the private sector, the total lending from 2022 to 2026 could be around $12 billion.
The official added that Pakistan has urged the World Bank to focus its interventions only in few areas where meaningful impact could be made and at the same time the loans are not spread out in small projects.
Restoring macroeconomic stability, improving energy sector performance, strengthening public governance and improving management of water resources would remain the top priorities of the World Bank in Pakistan, said the government official.
The World Bank is expected to complete consultations with Pakistan by end of next month and its board may approve the new five-year lending plan in May this year, according to the official.
Pakistan has remained fairly reliant on multilateral lenders in order to meet its budgetary and development needs.
The World Bank is already financing 58 projects worth $12 billion and programmes in Pakistan. The lender is currently reviewing the implementation of 2015-21 country partnership strategy. About $4.2 billion worth of projects and programme loans remain undisbursed under the 2015-21 country partnership strategy that is going to expire this June.