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UN memo suggests suspending 'Pakistan's debt repayments' following devastating floods: Report

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The Financial Times reported on Friday that Pakistan should halt repayments on its foreign debt and renegotiate loans with creditors after recent rains exacerbated the nation’s financial predicament, citing a UN policy note. This week, the UN Development Program will deliver the document to the Pakistani government. It also recommended that the nation’s creditors look into debt relief so that decision-makers may put financing its catastrophe response ahead of loan repayment, according to the publication.

The damage brought on by the floods was first estimated at $30 billion in Pakistan. The document also suggested debt swaps or restructuring, in which creditors forgo repayments in return for Pakistan committing to invest in climate change-resistant infrastructure, according to the Financial Times. In spite of the devastating floods, Pakistan’s finance minister earlier in the day said that the nation ‘absolutely not’ intends to default on its debt.

The floods in Pakistan have impacted over 33 million people and claimed over 1,500 lives. The monetary losses have raised worries that Pakistan won’t be able to pay its obligations. Antonio Guterres, the UN Secretary-General, as well as the administration have attributed the floods to climate change. Malaria, diarrhoea, typhoid, and dengue are just a few of the illnesses that have emerged as a result of the stagnant floods. The infections have been blamed for at least 324 fatalities.

In an effort to spread awareness, Hollywood actress and philanthropist Angelina Jolie visited flood victims with the international charity organisation IRC. In the southern Sindh province, she visited some of the most hit districts. She remarked, ‘I’ve seen those lives who were spared,’ but continued, ‘Without enough help, others won’t be here in the next several weeks, they won’t make it’. Her remarks were captured on video footage published by the nation’s military on Wednesday while she was touring the flood response facility.

 

 

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