The red carpet was rolled out for the United Arab Emirates (UAE) Crown Prince Sheikh Mohammed Bin Zayed Al-Nahyan in Islamabad to announce a support package of about $6.2 billion for Pakistan on Sunday.
Prime Minister Imran Khan welcomed the crown prince at the Nur Khan airbase, where an artillery unit honored him with a 21-gun salute, and the PM himself drove him to the Prime Minister’s House in Islamabad where he was given a guard of honour and a fly-past of JF-17 Thunders.
Moreover, all relevant terms and conditions have been finalised before UAE inducts $3 billion cash into the economy of Pakistan and another $3.2 billion worth of oil supplies on deferred payments for one year, thereby enabling the country to recover from its economic crisis. Al Nahyan, who is also deputy chief of the UAE s armed forces, held a one-on-one meeting with PM Khan, followed by a high-level delegation talks.
The UAE prince also met members of the federal cabinet including foreign minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi, finance minister Asad Umar, information minister Fawad Chaudhry and Adviser to the Prime Minister on Commerce Abdul Razak Dawood.
The two sides discussed bilateral relations, matters of mutual, regional and international interest. In December 2018, UAE officially announced that it would assist Pakistan to help it overcome international payment crisis and to avoid the deal with the International Monetary Fund (IMF), which contained strict terms and conditions.
“UAE has announced its intention to deposit US$3 billion (equivalent to AED11 billion) in the State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) to support the financial and monetary policy of the Islamic Republic of Pakistan,” the Abu Dhabi Fund for Development (ADFD) said in a statement.
The Pakistani rupee had plunged almost five percent to a record low at the end of November, after what appeared to be the sixth devaluation by the central bank in the past year.
Islamabad has also received billions of dollars in Chinese loans to finance ambitious infrastructure projects in the country. In November, a team from the International Monetary Fund (IMF) had visited Pakistan to discuss a possible bailout with officials but talks ended without an agreement.
The crown prince departed for the UAE around 3pm on Sunday after conducting back-to-back meetings. The crown prince last visited Pakistan in January 2007.