Pakistan, with liquidity problems, seeks the suspension of the debt until the Covid-19 crisis is overcome
The Prime Minister of Pakistan, Imran Khan, has called on the international community to suspend debt until the end of the coronavirus pandemic for low-income countries and the most affected, as well as the cancellation of the debt of the least developed, according to a media report on Friday. Pakistan’s cash-strapped economic woes have worsened further due to the coronavirus pandemic and the Khan government is organizing the finances of world bodies, including the International Monetary Fund, to overcome the crisis.
Presenting a 10-point agenda for urgent action ahead of the UN General Assembly’s special session on Covid-19 on Thursday, Khan underscored the steps the international community must take to defeat the Covid-19 pandemic, it reported. the Dawn newspaper.
The first item on your list is a request for debt suspension until the end of the pandemic for the low-income and worst-affected countries. The second is the “cancellation of the debt of the least developed countries” that are no longer in a position to repay their loans, he said.
Other items on the agenda include restructuring the public sector debt of other developing countries under an agreed inclusive multilateral framework; a general allocation of special drawing rights of USD 500 billion; expansion of concessional financing to lower-income countries through multilateral development banks; and the creation of a new “liquidity and sustainability mechanism”, which should provide short-term loans at lower costs.
The new coronavirus has so far infected 410,072 people and claimed 8,260 lives in Pakistan.
Addressing the session, Khan said that the coronavirus pandemic is the most serious global crisis since World War II.
About 100 world leaders and several dozen ministers are participating in the two-day UNGA virtual special session that began on Thursday.
Pakistan’s agenda also includes a reminder to rich nations to meet 0.7% of their official development assistance commitments and mobilize the required annual investment of US $ 1.5 trillion in sustainable infrastructure.
The prime minister also urged the international community to help meet the agreed target of mobilizing $ 100 billion per year for climate action in developing countries, according to the report.
Khan also called for immediate action to stop massive illicit financial outflows from developing countries to rich countries, to tax havens abroad. He also suggested the immediate return of assets stolen by corrupt politicians and criminals to these countries.
At the beginning of his opening remarks at the special session, UNGA President Volkan Bozkir said: “Today is a long overdue and much needed time for reckoning. None of us could have imagined, at this time last year, what was to come. ” UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres said “it is time to restart” the global response to crises like this. “As we build a strong recovery, we must seize the opportunity for change,” he added. The deadly virus has infected nearly 65 million people worldwide and has killed about 1.5 million.