“These austerity measures will save us 200 billion rupees annually. These measures are the need of the hour.”
Pakistan’s Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif has ordered ministers and advisers in Pakistan to start flying economy class and forgo salaries and luxury cars as part of austerity measures to reduce the cost of governance. He said the austerity measure would save the country at least N1 trillion yearly.
Mr Sharif directed all federal ministries and government offices in the country to cut expenditures by 15 per cent and the suspension of foreign trips, business class travel, allowance and other stipends by some members of his federal government’s cabinet.
The sudden austerity measures became necessary after Pakistan has since last year failed in its attempt to secure funds worth up to $1 billion from the International Monetary Fund (IMF) due to the country facing a balancing problem, with foreign exchange reserves falling below a three-week import cover.
Speaking at a news conference in Pakistan’s Islamabad, Mr Sharif said the new measures, which the affected parties voluntarily agreed to, aim to save the country nothing less than N1 trillion annually and a sacrifice made for the poor Pakistani people.
“These austerity measures will save us 200 billion rupees annually. These measures are the need of the hour, and these savings, no matter if that’s one penny, is very significant,” the Prime Minister said.
Other measures include the withdrawal of exotic cars from ministers, advisers and bureaucrats and would on travel on an economy class ticket if a foreign trip is necessary, and a complete ban has been imposed on the purchase of luxury cars for government-run entities.
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