Ministry of Finance responds over misleading news of government borrowings increase by $5.5 billions in FY 2019-20

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Ministry of Finance responds over misleading news of government borrowings increase by $5.5 billions in FY 2019-20

ISLAMABAD - The Ministry of Finance has described as misleading and factually incorrect a news report published in a section of press claiming that the government’s foreign borrowing increased by 5.5 billion dollars during July-Dec 2019 period.

In a statement issued today (Saturday), the Ministry of Finance contended that reporting gross external debt inflows only presents one side of the picture, ignoring outflows on account of repayments, which are the other side of the picture, and a prerequisite to calculate the net or actual increase in external indebtedness of the country.

Whereas, the reported gross disbursement was 5.5 billion dollars during July-December 2019, deducting the 3.8 billion dollars which the government paid back during the said period leaves a net figure of 1.7 billion dollars. Therefore, the real addition was 1.7 billion dollars, not 5.5 billion dollars as claimed by a section of the press.

The Ministry further clarified that gross external public debt inflows during FY 2018-19 were recorded at 10.5 billion dollars and not 16 billion dollars as claimed by a section of the press.

Similarly, the government repaid 7.4 billion dollars during last fiscal year, resulting in net increase of 3.1 billion dollars in external public debt and not 16 billion dollars as claimed.

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