Pak total debt of 71 years up by 35pc in PTI govt’s 13 months

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Shafaqna Pakistan:Beating the PPP and PML-N regimes way behind, the PTI government during the first 13 months of its tenure has added almost 35 per cent of the total debt that Pakistan had accumulated in the previous 71 years of its independence.

Latest figures of State Bank of Pakistan show that Pakistan’s total debt and liabilities which were Rs29,879 billion on 30th June 2018 reached Rs41,489 billion on 30th September 2019. This increase in 15 months, which include a little over 13 months of PTI government, is 38.8%.

The SBP figures show that the Gross Public Debt, which was Rs24,952 billion on 30th June 2018 reached Rs34,240 billion on 30th September 2019.

The official figures show that the total debt and liabilities which were Rs40,223 billion in June 2019 have increased to Rs41,489 in the first quarter of the current fiscal year i.e. September 2019.

The Gross Public Debt which was Rs32,707 billion in June 2019 rose to Rs34,240 in September 2019. It means during the first three months of the present fiscal year, there is an addition of Rs1,266 billion to the country’s Gross Public Debt.

Addition of the debt of almost Rs23,000 billion during the ten years of last PPP and PML-N regimes – from 2008 to 2018 – has been repeatedly quoted by the prime minister as the real damage to Pakistan and its people. For the same reason, the Prime Minister Imran Khan also set up a Debt Commission to find out as to how much of this debt money (Rs23,000 billion) went into the pockets of the PPP and PML-N rulers.

However, to the dismay of many even in the government the Imran Khan government has already added the debt of over Rs10,000 billion in just 13 months of his tenure, which is over 40% of the total debt added in 10 years of the PPP and PML-N governments.

The figures show that the PTI government is adding up in the public debt stock in a much higher pace than what the last PML-N and PPP government had collectively added during their tenures.

Prime Minister Imran Khan and the PTI had been quoting the figure of Rs30,000 billion debt which had reached this level in June 2018 from Rs6,691 billion in 2007. The party is of the view that this phenomenal and alarming raise in debt from Rs6,691 billion in 2007 to Rs30,000 billion in June 2018 is the consequence of alleged corruption by the last PML-N and PPP governments, which ruled the country during this period.

The SBP figures relating to the total public debts and liabilities by end June 2013 (the year when PPP completed its tenure) were Rs16,228 billion. When the PML-N government left, the total debts and liabilities were almost Rs29,000 billion

A representative of the government, however, stated that the PTI government had to obtain loans to pay the loans taken by the previous governments. He said massive loans taken by the previous governments damaged the national economy enormously.

He said the previous government kept the exchange rate unchanged artificially which also badly affected the economy. The representative said the PTI government had no other option but to obtain more loans to pay the previous loans. He said had the PTI government not taken the loans, the country would have gone bankrupt. He said the difficult steps taken by the government will soon yield good results.