Govt to make decisions to narrow fiscal deficit: CEO HBL

ONLY BANK REPRESENTATIVE IN IMF/WB ANNUAL MEETING 

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NC Monitoring Desk

BALI: In order to narrow the fiscal deficit, Pakistan’s Government has to make difficult decisions and come up solutions that encourage an increase in exports and tax base of the country, said President and CEO Habib Bank Limited Muhammad Aurangzeb, in an interview with Bloomberg on the sidelines of the IMF/World Bank annual meetings.

The President and CEO of Habib Bank Limited, Muhammad Aurangzeb, in his capacity, was the only Representative of the Pakistani banking sector, as well as the only Pakistani who accepted an invitation to join the membership of the exclusive Global CEO Council organized and managed by the Dow Jones Group/Wall Street Journal.

While sharing his views at the IMF/ World Bank annual meetings, Aurangzeb pointed out that with dwindling reserves a breathing space is required, that is where the IMF comes in, adding that the devaluation will ultimately help exports and Pakistan.

In order for government policies to become sustainable in the long run, he stated that “…made-in-Pakistan and an export based model is the way forward.”

Speaking on China’s One Belt One Road initiative, he pointed out that CPEC stands out as its flagship in terms of investment being made in Pakistan’s energy sector, roads and other infrastructure projects which have also benefited Pakistan and in the medium to long term these projects will boost Pakistan’s exports and ultimately pay back and create a long term positive effect on the balance of payments.

He further stated: “A lot of these projects should be invoiced in RMB and settled in RMB especially energy projects which should not be based on a Dollar index but a RMB index which is a wonderful opportunity for Pakistan to diversify.” Furthermore, he added that “HBL is the only Pakistani bank which has a physical presence in China”.  With regard to the future and digitalization he emphasized, “HBL thinks of itself as an IT company with a banking license”.

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