Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan arrives in Madinah during maiden visit to Saudi Arabia

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Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan visits the Prophet’s Mosque in Madinah, Saudi Arabia. (Twitter @PTIofficial)
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Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan visits the Prophet’s Mosque in Madinah, Saudi Arabia. (Twitter @PTIofficial)
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Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan visits the Prophet’s Mosque in Madinah, Saudi Arabia. (Twitter @PTIofficial)
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Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan visits the Prophet’s Mosque in Madinah, Saudi Arabia. (Twitter @PTIofficial)
Updated 19 September 2018
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Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan arrives in Madinah during maiden visit to Saudi Arabia

  • Although bilateral relations and regional security are on the agenda of Imran Khan’s visit, a more urgent priority will be a possible economic bailout package from the KSA
  • The prime minister will call on King Salman and hold a bilateral meeting with the crown prince, said the Pakistan Foreign Office

ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister Imran Khan arrived in Madinah, Saudi Arabia, beginning the initial leg of his first foreign tour since taking office in August.
The premier was welcomed at Madinah Airport by the Governor of Madinah, Faisal bin Salman, Pakistani Ambassador to Saudi Arabia Hasham bin Saddique, and other members of the Pakistani consulate.
Khan, accompanied by Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi, Finance Minister Asad Umar, Information Minister Fawad Chaudhry and Adviser for Commerce Abdul Razak Dawood, is also scheduled to perform Umrah during his two-day stay in Saudi Arabia.


“The prime minister will call on His Majesty King Salman bin Abdulaziz and hold a bilateral meeting with the crown prince (His Royal Highness Mohammad Bin Salman). The king will also host a state banquet for the prime minister at the Royal Court. Accompanying ministers will also meet their counterparts to discuss bilateral cooperation,” reads a statement issued by the Foreign Office.
The Secretary-General of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation, Dr. Yousef bin Ahmed Al-Othaimeen, will also call on the PM during his visit.
Although bilateral relations and the regional security situation are on the agenda of Khan’s visit, a more pertinent, urgent priority will be a possible economic bailout package sought from Saudi Arabia by the new Pakistani Government.

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In 2014, six months after Pakistan obtained its last IMF bailout, Saudi Arabia loaned Pakistan $1.5 billion, which the government used to strengthen its currency. Pakistan’s current account deficit increased to 43 percent ($18 billion) in the fiscal year that ended June 30.
Analysts, however, told Reuters that a fresh bailout package from the IMF, which would be Pakistan’s 13th since the late 1980s, is inevitable.

While the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf Government has been debating several options to plug the hole in Pakistan’s rapidly draining foreign exchange reserves, it is also avidly trying to seek financial assistance from allied countries (including Saudi Arabia, China and the UAE) as opposed to going to the IMF.
Before the visit, Finance Minister Asad Umar said that IMF assistance would remain a “fallback option.


Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman arrives in China

Updated 5 min 11 sec ago
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Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman arrives in China

DUBAI: Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman arrived in China on Thursday, on the third leg of his Asia tour that started in Pakistan.

At the airport, the crown prince was greeted by a number of Chinese officials, including Khi Li Fung, Deputy Chairman of the Advisory and Political Council of the People's Republic of China, and Chinese Ambassador to the Kingdom Li Hua Xin.

He will meet Chinese President Xi Jin Ping during the official visit.

On Wednesday, the crown prince left India, after talks with Prime Minister Narendra Modi and President Ram Nath Kovind.

During his visit, Prince Mohammed said he expects the Kingdom's investments in India to be worth $100 billion in the next two years.

“We expect that the opportunity we are developing in India in many fields will exceed 100 billion dollars over the next two years,” he said.

(Developing)