Pakistan’s economic development may slow down in 2019: IMF

ISLAMABAD: The International Monetary Fund (IMF) said on Tuesday economic development of Pakistan may slow down in 2019 with a rise in unemployment as economic conditions of the country further decline.

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In a report titled World Economic Outlook 2019, IMF said the estimated Gross Development Product (GDP) growth will remain 2.9 percent in current year and will be 2.9 percent in 2020, in contrast with 5.2 percent previous year.

The expected budget deficit of the country will remain 7.2 percent with tendency to increase in 2020 and inflation will likely to be 7.6 percent, in spite of projected 6 percent, according to IMF.

IMF estimated that the current account deficit of the country would amount to 5.2 percent in current year and 4.3 percent next year with unemployment rate to be 6.2 percent this year.

IMF asserted the need to take necessary measures to improve economic indicators.

The report stated, “growth in the Middle East, North Africa, Afghanistan, and Pakistan region is expected to decline to 1.5 percent in 2019, before recovering to about 3.2 percent in 2020. The outlook for the region is weighed down by multiple factors, including slower oil GDP growth in Saudi Arabia; ongoing macroeconomic adjustment challenges in Pakistan; US sanctions in Iran; and civil tensions and conflict across several other economies, including Iraq, Syria, and Yemen, where recovery from the collapse associated with the war is now expected to be slower than previously anticipated.”

It further added, “the medium-term outlook for the Middle East, North Africa, Afghanistan, and Pakistan region is largely shaped by the outlook for fuel prices, needed adjustment to correct macroeconomic imbalances in certain economies, and geopolitical tensions.”

“In Pakistan, in the absence of further adjustment policies, growth is projected to remain subdued at about 2.5 percent, with continued external and fiscal imbalances weighing on confidence,” the report concluded.

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