Prime Minister (PM) Shehbaz Sharif on Friday said that Pakistan is likely to receive an investment worth $1 billion from Saudi Arabia.

During his speech, the PM asked businessmen to speak about their problems and said: “We need to analyse the economic situation with patience.”

The premier then requested the business community to provide solutions as the local currency has lately been fluctuating significantly against the United States (US) dollar. “I am not here for political point-scoring,” PM Shehbaz clarified.

RELATED STORIES

ADVERTISEMENT

“When I took the oath on April 11, the rate of United States (US) dollar against the Pakistani currently was 189,” said Shehbaz.

“The Rs. 60-65 increase in the rupee value against the greenback wasn’t the coalition government’s fault,” Shehbaz said, adding that when the former government speculated that they would be ousted, they reduced the petroleum prices despite a price hike in the international market, thus going against the conditions of the International Monetary Fund (IMF).

“During the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf’s (PTI) tenure loans worth Rs22,000 billion were taken which shows an 80 per cent increase from 2018,” he said, adding that “powerful echelons” in the country supported their “favourite” person.

Shedding light on his decision regarding the ban imposed on the import of luxury and non-essential items, PM Shehbaz said that while he banned the import of certain items for some time, he did not increase the duties because the “elite class would have still purchased imported items after paying duties.”

The premier said: “Pakistan cannot afford to purchase gas worth $20 billion; we have to slowly and gradually move towards solar and wind energy.”

“If green energy comes to Pakistan, we will save Pakistan’s funds,” said PM Shehbaz.

The premier arrived in Karachi earlier today on a day-long visit.