(Published in The Express Tribune on May 21, 2013)
This is with reference to Shahid Javed Burki’s article “Economic priorities” (May 20), in which he suggests that the government should take its time and prepare its own plan before going to the IMF. Given the bitterness of the prescriptions expected from the IMF, devising our own plan would be a natural choice.
Ironically, there is no difference of opinion between the IMF and Pakistani economists about governance issues in the power sector, untargeted subsidies, swelling public debt, performance of public sector enterprises, and other major issues faced by the economy. Therefore, it would help if he can advise on what the government’s own plan should essentially consist of, and what alternative channels may be used to tackle external payments in the meanwhile.