ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister Imran Khan on Monday called for deepening Pakistan-United States’ engagement to promote peace, stability and economic development in Afghanistan.
The Prime Minister was talking to Chairman of the US House Foreign Affairs Committee (HFAC), Congressman Gregory Meeks. He was accompanied by the Chairman of the Subcommittee on Asia, the Pacific, Central Asia, and Non-Proliferation, Congressman Ami Bera, according to a statement issued by the PM’s Office.
He warmly welcomed both Congressmen’s visit to Pakistan and hoped that it will not only lead to further deepening of Pakistan-United States relations but will also be instrumental in strengthening ties between Parliaments of the two countries.
Referring to the evolving situation in Afghanistan, the Prime Minister particularly underscored that there was an urgent need to financially assist the Afghan people as part of the effort to prevent a humanitarian crisis and economic collapse.
The premier also hoped that ways and means would be found to address the liquidity issue and enable banking channels to help Afghanistan sustain its immediate economic burden and challenges.
PM Imran expressed the hope that more high-level exchanges, at all tiers including the Administration, will take place between both countries reinforcing their ties.
Both sides maintained that Pakistan and United States should work to strengthen bilateral trade and economic relationship as well as co-operation in health, security, counter-terrorism, and combating climate change.
The United Nations, underscoring the need for urgent actions to prop up Afghanistan’s banks, warned that a spike in people unable to repay loans, lower deposits, and a cash liquidity crunch could cause the financial system to collapse within months.
In a three-page report on Afghanistan’s banking and financial system, the UN Development Programme (UNDP) said the economic cost of a banking system collapse — and consequent negative social impact — “would be colossal.”