UN Sees Upward Trend: Pakistan’s Economy Projected to Expand 2% in 2024

Spread the love

Pakistan’s Economic Outlook: Modest Growth Amidst Global Challenges

The United Nations has released its mid-year World Economic Situation and Prospects report, painting a mixed picture for Pakistan’s economy in 2024. While the report forecasts “modest economic growth” with a 2% GDP expansion, significant challenges remain.

IMF Support and Tight Financial Conditions

Pakistan’s recent Stand-by Arrangement with the International Monetary Fund (IMF) for $3 billion offers a glimmer of hope. This program aims to stabilize the economy, boost foreign exchange reserves, and facilitate fiscal adjustments while protecting social spending. However, tight financial conditions and fiscal and external imbalances are expected to continue hindering near-term growth across South Asia.

Geopolitical Tensions and Currency Pressures

The ongoing war in Ukraine and conflicts in Western Asia are casting a shadow on the region’s economic outlook. These geopolitical tensions expose net-oil-importing countries like Pakistan to the risk of sudden oil price spikes, further straining their economies. The report also highlights the depreciation pressures faced by South Asian currencies in the latter half of 2023. Notably, the Pakistani rupee remained relatively stable compared to its regional counterparts.

Monetary Policy and Food Security Concerns

The State Bank of Pakistan’s decision to maintain its record-high policy rate of 22% since June 2023 reflects their cautious approach to inflation. This tight monetary stance might dampen economic activity in the short term.

Food security remains a pressing concern in the region. While the number of people facing acute food insecurity decreased in Sri Lanka, it increased in Pakistan and Bangladesh. Afghanistan continues to face the worst food crisis, with nearly half its population grappling with severe food insecurity.

Climate Shocks and Global Economic Outlook

The report warns about the ever-worsening climate shocks threatening development gains, particularly for vulnerable nations like Least Developed Countries (LDCs) and small island developing States (SIDS). Pakistan, despite experiencing above-average rainfall in 2023, is not immune to these challenges.

On a brighter note, the global economic forecast has been revised upwards to 2.7% growth in 2024 and 2.8% in 2025. This improvement is attributed to the better-than-expected performance of major economies such as Brazil, India, Russia, and the United States. Additionally, inflation is showing signs of decline compared to its 2023 peak.

Pakistan's inflation to ease, growth to pick up in 2024-25: UN Report - Mettis Global Link

Looking Beyond – Risks and Opportunities

Despite cautious optimism, the report acknowledges several downside risks. These include higher-for-longer interest rates, rising debt burdens, and ongoing geopolitical tensions. The report also sheds light on the challenges faced by LDCs and SIDS, where growth prospects are revised downward.

For Africa, the continent disproportionately burdened by extreme poverty and hunger, a significant portion of public revenue is being used for debt servicing. This trend highlights the need for sustainable debt management strategies in developing countries.

The report concludes with a call for developing countries to leverage their critical mineral resources, like lithium and cobalt, crucial for the clean energy transition. However, this requires careful policy design and implementation to avoid the pitfalls of the “resource curse” – a historical pattern where resource-rich nations fail to translate their wealth into sustainable development.

Overall, Pakistan’s economic outlook for 2024 is a story of cautious optimism. While the IMF program and modest growth projections offer some hope, the country faces significant challenges like food insecurity, climate threats, and global economic headwinds. By implementing sound economic policies while navigating the complex global landscape, Pakistan can pave the way for a more resilient and prosperous future.

For Similar News & Updates:


For Ads Placements: 92 315 204 2287

Spread the love

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *