Khan looks to Chinese example to turn Pakistan economy round

7 Nov 18

Corruption and money laundering are the “biggest hurdles” stopping Pakistan from developing and pulling people out of poverty, prime minister Imran Khan has warned.

The premier lauded China for pulling itself out of corruption and poverty and said his government should “take full advantage of China’s experience and expertise to tackle Pakistan’s problems”.

Speaking to the Central Party School of the Communist Party of China, Khan said: “Pakistan’s biggest hurdles in way of development are corruption and money laundering”.

He said he wanted to focus on strengthening institutions to tackle corruption. “The stronger the state institutions, the lesser the corruption,” Khan added.

Khan, who pledged to fight corruption during his election campaign this summer, said that Pakistan had “started suffering from corruption” after the mid-80s.

Khan added that a country cannot progress without equality in society. He said: “This is where we admire China so much. No country in human history, has ever taken 700m people out of poverty in 30 years as China has done.”

This comes as Pakistan is looking for loans to help with its debt crisis, as foreign reserves have plunged by 42% since the start of the year and now stand at $8bn. The current account deficit has swollen to about $18bn, for which Khan has blamed the previous government.

China indicated last week it would support Pakistan with its economic situation. Saudi Arabia also pledged to give Khan a $6bn rescue package.

Khan has already approached the IMF, but he has expressed concern over the lender’s loan conditions and is keen to find financial help elsewhere.

An IMF bailout would be the country’s 13th rescue package from the lender since the end of the 1980s.

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