Nusa Dua (Indonesia): International Monetary Fund (IMF) Managing Director Christine Lagarde on Thursday said that a bailout deal with Pakistan would require “absolute transparency” of its debts, many of which come from China’s landmark Belt and Road Initiative. “In whatever work we do, we need to have a complete understanding and absolute transparency about the nature, size, terms of the debt that is bearing on a particular country,” Lagarde said at the IMF and World Bank Group annual meetings in Bali, Indonesia. She added the IMF needed to understand the extent of the position of the debt, including lending from sovereign governments and from state-owned enterprises, so that officials could determine a country’s debt sustainability, Efe news reported.
Her statements indicated that Pakistan could be forced to disclose the full extent and terms of Chinese lending it received in recent years as part of its participation in the Belt and Road Initiative, China’s vast global infrastructure-spending programme. Earlier this week, Pakistan said that it would be seeking a loan from the IMF. The country has a ballooning trade deficit, falling currency and is quickly exhausting its foreign-exchange reserves. Experts say the country needs about $12 billion to cover its imports and meet upcoming debt payments. (IANS)