Pakistan’s economy grew just two percent in 2008-09

June 12th, 2009 - 2:15 pm ICT by IANS  

Islamabad, June 12 (IANS) Pakistan’s economy grew by a mere two percent in fiscal 2008-09 ending June 30 against 4.1 percent in the previous year, says the pre-budget economic survey.
The agriculture sector, however, performed well, partly offsetting the slippages in other sectors, Dawn reported Friday.

Shaukat Tarin, adviser to the prime minister on finance, said while unveiling the survey here Thursday that GDP growth slumped from the targeted 4.5 percent because of internal and external challenges.

“Pakistan’s macroeconomic environment is affected by the intensification of the war on terror and deepening of the global financial crisis, which penetrated into domestic economy through the route of substantial decline in Pakistan’s exports and a visible slowdown in foreign direct inflows,” the survey said.

This decline in growth was saved by an unexpected 4.7 percent growth in the agriculture sector against the targeted 3.5 percent, Tarin pointed out.

Describing 2008-09 as a year of economic consolidation, Tarin added: “The economic fundamentals would have gone out of control had the government not taken corrective measures.”

He said the budget for fiscal 2009-10, to be presented Saturday, would focus on poverty alleviation and economic growth.

“We will dole out money for development sectors to create jobs and generate economic activities.”

He also warned that the budget deficit might cross five percent of GDP next fiscal - from the IMF’s projected target of 4.6 percent - mainly due to external flows.

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