Islamabad: The time period given to Pakistan for repayment of nearly USD 1 billion from the loans taken from UAE has expired. But the Pakistan finance ministry has expressed confidence that UAE will grant an extension to Pakistan. Pakistan journalists are saying that this is causing more and more embarrassment for the country. At the same time, these journalists also ask, ‘How long can Pakistan prolong death?’
In 2018, the UAE provided a loan of USD 6.2 billion to Pakistan. A part of this was deposited in Pakistan’s foreign reserves. Loans were also provided to Pakistan in the form of fuel-related concessions. Out of these loans, Pakistan was supposed to repay nearly USD 1 billion on the 12th of March. But the Pakistani economy has hit rock bottom. Pakistan cannot repay the UAE unless it borrows from another country or institution. A few months ago, when Saudi Arabia demanded a repayment, Pakistan borrowed from China and repaid Saudi Arabia. Even this time, Pakistan does not seem to have any other options available.
But Kamran Ali Fazal, Secretary at the Pakistan finance ministry, expressed confidence that UAE will grant an extension to Pakistan for the repayment. Fazal claimed that Pakistan and UAE are allies, and the UAE will certainly help its ally in this matter. At the same time, journalists from Pakistan expressed regret over the state of the country.
Pakistan is not performing satisfactorily on any front. On the economic front, Pakistan is almost devastated. Pakistani journalists express regret that the UAE demanding repayment of the loan comes as an insult to Pakistan in this scenario. The Indian media has highlighted the UAE repayment issue and are making fun of Pakistan. Pakistan, which is solely dependent on loans from other countries, is not in a position to even repay interest on the loans. No one on the international level is giving importance to Pakistan, which is in a pitiable state. No one is willing to listen to Pakistan, even on the Kashmir issue. Pakistani media is criticising that this is because Pakistan is only begging in front of other countries. Simultaneously, the media is expressing concerns that Pakistan, which is frantically trying to borrow from the International Monetary Fund, will have to face stringent conditions. The opposition parties are blaming Imran Khan and his defective policies for the failures.
Pakistan took a stand against Saudi Arabia and UAE as they refused to take a stand supporting Pakistan on the Kashmir issue. Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan started preparations to form a parallel organisation with Turkey and other Islamic countries. Thereafter, Saudi Arabia and UAE started a spate of decisions to show Pakistan its place. After realising that Pakistan, which is always begging for fuel and loans, has garnered the courage to antagonise them, Saudi Arabia and UAE made persistent demands for repayment of their loans given to Pakistan. Thereafter, Pakistan realised its mistake, and Prime Minister Imran Khan is making frantic efforts to make amends. But analysts from Pakistan itself are saying that it is too late for that.