China provides $2 billion loan to Pakistan's ailing economy

China provides $2 billion loan to Pakistan
# 23 March 2019 10:07 (UTC +04:00)

To help Pakistan weather its current fiscal woes, China has decided to provide a loan of approximately $2.1 billion, ONA reports citing the Dawn.

Pakistan's Finance Ministry announced on Friday that all procedural requirements for transfer of the loan by China to Pakistan have been completed.

The Dawn reported that the loan amount would be deposited with the State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) by 25 March.

"The Ministry of Finance has announced that the State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) will receive a 15 billion yuan loan, equivalent to $2.1bn, from China by Monday," the Dawn reported.

A Pakistan Foreign Ministry spokesperson said that the loan will further strengthen foreign exchange reserves and ensure the balance of payment stability for Pakistan.

The confirmation of the Chinese loan to Pakistan comes close on the heels of a warning by the US that China has a responsibility "to not shield" Pakistan.

"We think China has a responsibility to also not shield Pakistan and join the international community in calling on Pakistan to take action against terrorists operating on its soil," a senior Trump administration official said on Wednesday.

Most Western powers are currently against lending any kind of support to Pakistan in an attempt to exert pressure on the country to take action on terror, especially after the 14 February suicide bombing in Pulwama of India-administered Kashmir which claimed the lives of 40 Indian soldiers.

On India's behest, the US, France and Britain put forward a resolution to the UN Sanctions Committee of the Security Council to designate Pakistan-based Azhar Massod a "global terrorist." The move suffered a setback as China put a "technical hold" on the process.

Pakistan, which is struggling to boost its deteriorating economy, has already received loans of around $1 billion each from Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates (UAE).

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