Pakistan was awarded a financial aid of $2 billion from Saudi Arabia, Finance Minister Ishaq Dar said on Tuesday. This comes a day before the International Monetary Fund’s board is expected to give final approval for a much-needed $3 billion bailout.
The finance minister said that Saudi Arabia has deposited the funds with the country’s central bank, boosting foreign exchange reserves when Pakistan needed it the most as it had barely enough to cover a month of controlled imports.
Thanking Saudi Arabia, Dar termed it as a “great gesture.” In his video statement, he stated, “I thank Saudi Arabia on behalf of the prime minister and army chief.”
The Middle Eastern country pledged the funds in April, but did not deposit the funds in the State Bank of Pakistan until it was sure of the IMP bailout would be forthcoming.
Pakistani Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif stated, “It reflects the growing confidence of our brotherly countries and the international community in Pakistan’s economic turnaround.”
The IMF deal will unlock more bilateral and multilateral financing in addition to the money from Saudi Arabia and Dar has said that he expects Pakistan’s foreign exchange reserves to rise up to $15 billion by the end of this month.