ISLAMABAD: Pakistan’s central bank chief launched a strategic plan for the next five years in a ceremony held in Karachi on Friday, saying the document contained the key objectives that the bank planned to pursue to ensure financial stability in the country.
Last year, the government approved the State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) Amendment Bill, 2021, to meet a condition laid down by the International Monetary Fund (IMF) under a $6.5 billion bailout facility to ensure complete autonomy to the central bank.
The SBP Vision 2028 is the first plan since the passage of the amendment bill and has been developed through a consultative and inclusive process with key stakeholders.
Addressing the ceremony in Karachi, SBP Governor Jameel Ahmad maintained the plan would foster price and financial stability and contribute to the country’s sustainable economic development.
“Mr. Ahmad added that evolving risks and challenges to the economy and financial stability, including climate change, rapid digital innovations and disruptions, and growing cyber security threats, have been kept in perspective while developing the plan,” announced a statement issued by the central bank after the event.
“Governor SBP elaborated that the SBP Vision 2028, revolves around six strategic goals that include maintaining inflation within the medium-term target range, enhancing efficiency, effectiveness, fairness and stability of the financial system, promoting inclusive and sustainable access to financial services, transforming to a Shariah compliant banking system, building an innovative and inclusive digital financial services ecosystem, and transforming SBP into a high-tech, people-centric organization.”
He noted these strategic goals were built to cover five cross-cutting themes, including strategic communication, climate change, technological innovation, diversity and inclusion, and productivity and competitiveness.
Pakistan has witnessed major economic challenges in recent years that has forced it to seek external financial assistance from the IMF and friendly nations like China, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates.
Faced with a precarious financial situation amid rapid depreciation of national currency and dwindling foreign currency reserves, Pakistan managed to secure a short-term $3 billion loan program in July from the IMF to stave off sovereign debt default.