The government is likely to hike power tariff by Rs3.30 per unit in line with the International Monetary Fund (IMF) conditions to get the programme rolling that has been suspended since Feb 2020.
Daily Jang quoted a senior government official, saying the increase in the power prices will be made before the start of the next year and the government will take measures to take the masses into confidence over the move.
The IMF bailout was availed by the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) in 2019 to provide crucial support to fast depleting foreign exchange reserves. But the package was suspended at the start of this year.
Pakistan has to return $4.4 billion on account of foreign commercial loans during the current fiscal year for which it desperately needs the money from the monetary fund. It has also already returned $2bn to Saudi Arabia and will return $1bn soon to clear the Saudi debt.
Earlier this week, Pakistan secured a $1.7 billion (Rs272 bn) debt relief agreement to help offset the financial headwinds sparked by the coronavirus pandemic.
The deal provided a moratorium on debt payments for large swathes of the current fiscal year and help ease the cash-strapped country’s massive financial obligations.
“The Government of Pakistan has successfully negotiated and concluded rescheduling agreements with 19 bilateral creditors, including members of the Paris club,” the Ministry of Economic Affairs said in a statement.