$1.5 billion BRACE programme will provide timely liquidity to Pakistan: ADB

Officials from the Asian Development Bank (ADB) said on Monday that its $1.5-billion Building Resilience with Active Countercyclical Expenditures (BRACE) programme will provide timely liquidity to Pakistan and help mitigate the immediate impact of exogenous shocks.

In a meeting with Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif, they said that the funding will also allow the government to roll out its relief and recovery package to the flood victims.

“This will increase social protection, enhance food security and aid in employment of flood-affected people,” they said. “It will also provide critical support to Pakistan at a difficult time.”

The team added that the “ADB stands ready to assist the government and this cooperation is a result of combined efforts.” On the occasion, PM Shehbaz thanked the ADB for supporting Pakistan in the ongoing challenging times.“Most definitely, this support will go a long way in improving our financial position and helping flood affected people,” he said. “It will also go a long way in construction of resilient infrastructure in Pakistan for our future needs.”

Finance Minister Ishaq Dar recalled holding fruitful meetings with ADB teams during his visit to Washington earlier during the month.

“ADB was supportive and cooperative to us,” he said. “The government is struggling to deal with macroeconomic issues which it has inherited from the previous government. A natural calamity at such a time, in the shape of floods added to the woes.” ADB approves $1.5bn financing for Pakistan amid floods, supply-chain disruptions

He told the meeting that the government of Pakistan had disbursed Rs70 billion in flood aid to the victims. He also stated that losses to the tune of $32.4 billion are being borne by Pakistan on account of disastrous floods.“We are trying to push utilisation of pending funds for flood-hit people,” he said.

Last week, the ADB okayed $1.5 billion in financing to help the government of Pakistan provide social protection, promote food security, and support employment for its people amid devastating floods and global supply chain disruptions.

The loan will help fund the government’s $2.3 billion countercyclical development expenditure program designed to cushion the impacts of external shocks, including the Russian invasion of Ukraine.

“Pakistan’s recovery from the Covid-19 pandemic has been impeded by external shocks,” said ADB Director General for Central and West Asia Yevgeniy Zhukov.

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