Pak Economy: Dollars & Sense, National Security

DESPARDES — In July 2018, a month before the PTI took over the reins of the government, our Current Account Deficit (CAD) stood at $2.13 billion (for that month alone). The CAD figure for July 2019 has come in at $579 million – a 73 percent improvement over July last year. (good fiscal management)

Last week, KSE-100 Index amassed a wholesome 2,585 points with capitalization going up by more than Rs500 billion– this is the highest ever weekly increase. (Good news for business & financial community, documented & undocumented)

The price of naan going up is bad news though. (common man’s disposal income issue, documented & undocumented))
And the FATF challenge in Bangkok (September 5) and then in Paris (October 18-23). (national security matter).

Other things being equal, our economic system suffers five real fault-lines and therefore needs serious reforms. The reform basket is absolutely empty with these. (governance matter)

These fault-lines are: the Rs1.7 trillion circular debt, Rs1.6 trillion leakages in Public Sector Enterprises (PSEs), trillion-rupee leakages in public procurement projects, $2 billion leakage in the gas sector and the Rs734 billion debt in the government’s commodity operations. (organizational capabilities and public policy issues)

Result: skyrocketing of debt.

Overall, for the first time in 19 years, Pakistan’s debt and liabilities dangerously exceeded the size of its economy and peaked to a record Rs40 trillion at the end of last fiscal year (ending June 2019). (national security matter)

Since the new war is being “conducted by a roughly 4:1 ratio of nonmilitary and military measures,” we ought to take nonmilitary fault-lines seriously. The enemy’s real goal is to weaken our war-waging capability. Before it is too late, let us bring our nonmilitary fault-lines into focus. (national security matter)

(Based on original article by Dr. Farrukh Saleem; appeared in The News.)