As part of the larger Debt Service Suspension Initiative (DSSI) to help neutralise the economic hardships brought upon by the pandemic, another installment of $526 million was rescheduled for Pakistan by the G-20 club. This has resulted in an overall debt relief worth $1.7 billion for the country. It is imperative that we take this opportunity and make the most of it by focusing our efforts on revitalising the economy.
The debt rescheduling agreements were made on Monday with France, China and Switzerland by the Economic Affairs Division of the respective countries. This should bode well for the country considering that our exports have experienced a steady incline for the past few months. In fact, November showed an increase of 7.67 percent, $2.161 billion, in foreign revenue through the export of commodities like textiles. Furthermore, the potential of trade is expected to increase especially when taking into account the prospective market in China—worth $23 billion to be exact. Securing even one percent of this market would require the country to focus on exporting raw materials and intermediate goods to the neighbour. As the government works on targeting newer markets, and reinvigorating existing ones, the country’s economic environment might be on the path to recovery.
Debt suspension has been one of the good things to come as a result of the pandemic and it is vital that the government does not take this for granted. Enormous pressure has been lifted off of the economy and now we are in a position where we can invest in our strengths and capitalise on them so as to be in a stable position in the future when we will have to return the debt.