Flood Aid


Pakistan’s economy is going through the worst time of its history. Foreign currency reserves have touch the historical down trend as they are currently standing at 4.5 billion dollars which are not enough for arranging imports for even one month more. The country is standing at the verge of devastation. But, at this point the move for asking international community to assist Pakistan has been played by the government. The rulers have decided to give support to the economy of the country by getting assistance from the world powers on the name of flood aid.
Prime Minister, Shehbaz Sharif and Secretary General United Nations (UN) Antonio Gutters jointly chaired an international conference in Geneva. Officials from some 40 countries as well as private donors and international financial institutions have gathered in Geneva as Islamabad seeks support in what is expected to be a major test case for who pays for climate disasters. The main purpose of the conference was to get the assistance from the big powers to restore the damages caused by climate in Pakistan. Pakistan Monday secured pledges well over a targetted $8 billion in flood aid as it scrambles to mobilise funds to rehabilitate the devastated 33 million population and repair damages worth billions. Information Minister Marriyum Aurangzeb, in a tweet, announced that Pakistan has already received total pledges of $8.57 billion at the International Conference on Climate Resilient Pakistan in Geneva. The pledges came after Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif launched an $8 billion flood aid appeal at the Geneva moot, aimed at helping the country overcome the devastation caused due to the cataclysmic floods.
World Bank and Islamic Development Bank (IsDB) pledged over $6 billion to Pakistan to aid its climate rebuilding effort in response to the country’s $8 billion flood appeal. The IsDB has pledged $4.2 billion over the next three years to Pakistan and World Bank $2 billion, while the United States, China and other nations have also announced support. Pakistan is in dire want of $8 billion from world donors during the next three years to shore up the country’s economy which was mostly laid to waste by extreme floods from June to October 2022, PM Shehbaz told the moot’s participants.
Pakistan is currently utilizing all the available resources to get a prompt assistance to avoid the possible default. Besides donors conference in Geneva, country is also in contact with IMF for finalizing the 09th review to get the package of 1.1 billion dollars. French President Emmanuel Macron said Paris was ready to support Pakistan in its talks with financial institutions, as the country faces huge losses from recent floods. An International Monetary Fund (IMF) delegation will also meet Finance Minister Ishaq Dar on the sidelines of a conference in Geneva, a spokesperson of the lender said on Sunday, as Pakistan struggles to restart its bailout programme.
There is no eye blinking from the fact that the economy of the country standing very close to its default, therefore the government is utilizing all the possible tactics for protecting country and nation. But, the sad reality is that worldwide image of the country has been affected badly by begging for survival at international level.
Published in Daily Country News, January 10th, 2023.

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