Floods have caused damages worth $18 billion: Miftah

F.P. Report

ISLAMABAD: The Finance Minister Miftah Ismail could not hold his tears while talking about the devastations caused by heavy rainfall and floods in the country. The floods have caused over $18 billion damages, he said in the presses.

Addressing a press conference on Saturday the Finance Minister said that Pakistan staring in the face of a default when the PML-N government took charge. But, rather than running away like the PTI government, they took the challenge heads on, he added.

Miftah said that Pakistan needs at least 10 cities like Sialkot to increase its exports and curb the trade deficit. The circular debt has been increasing since 2010, there is a circular debt of Rs2500 billion on electric authorities while Rs1500 billion on Gas companies, he added.

The Finance Minister admitted that electricity bills have skyrocketed but they are selling units cheaper than Germany and France. Per unit cost of electricity in the country was Rs69, and the demand of electricity rises by 1000 MW with 1 degree rise in temperature, he added. He said that 10 percent of total electricity is lost in line losses as bill collection from Punjab is 80%. The government has given a subsidy of Rs660 billion on Petrol and diesel, he added.

Miftah said that their government just abolished subsidies on petroleum products, the previous government was selling Rs80 cheaper diesel than its buying price, he added. The PML-N leader said that they were compelled to import $3.7 billion oil in June. Right now, there is only Rs7 tax on diesel and Rs38 on petroleum, he added.