Saudis Offer Pakistan $6 billion Rescue Package


Saudi Arabia pledged three billion dollars in foreign currency support for a year, and a further loan worth up to another three billion dollars in deferred payments for oil imports, to Pakistan, the Pakistani government announced in a statement on Tuesday.

The remarks came in response to Khan's tweet on Sunday saying he "strongly condemns the new cycle of killings of innocent Kashmiris" at the hands of Indian forces.

"One thing Pakistan needs more than any other country right now is peace and security, particularly with India and Afghanistan for regional peace and stability", Khan said at an investment conference in Saudi Arabia's capital, Riyadh.

The new Pakistan leader also attended a Saudi Arabian investment conference where he launched a charm offensive targeting potential investors, continuing to seek funding to plug deteriorating finances.

"Unless we get loans from friendly countries or the IMF (International Monetary Fund), we actually won't have in another two or three months enough foreign exchange to service our debts or to pay for our imports". The Pakistani federal government will proceed with negotiations after consultations with the local government in Balochistan, the Pakistani province where much of the country's mineral resources are found, the report says.

The Prime Minister will embark on a two-day Saudi Arabia visit on October 23; will fly to Malaysia on October 28, and will leave for week-long visit to China on November 3.

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Pakistan has not dropped the idea of seeking assistance from the International Monetary Fund (IMF) despite Saudi Arabia offering United States dollars 6 billion aid package to mitigate pressure on the cash-strapped country's foreign exchange reserves, officials said on Wednesday.

Khan is in Saudi Arabia to seek loans to reservice debt and shore up Pakistan's economy.

But help has been in short supply and economists' warnings have grown increasingly urgent.

Saudi Arabia's high-profile Future Investment Initiative - nicknamed "Davos in the Desert" - saw partners and worldwide allies withdraw after it emerged that Khashoggi, who had been critical of Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, was killed inside the Saudi embassy in Istanbul on 2 October.

The visit also comes as Pakistan's central bank warned this week that inflation would likely double in the coming year - hitting 7.5 per cent - while the country's growth target rate of 6.2 per cent would likely be missed.