The Pakistan Paper Association has warned that due to the paper crisis in the country, books will not be made available to students in the new school year starting from August 2022.
While the cause of the paper crisis is due to global inflation, the present paper crisis in Pakistan is also due to the wrong policies of the governments and the monopoly of the local paper industries.
All Pakistan Paper Merchants Association, Pakistan Printing Graphic Arts Industry Association (PAPGAI), and other organizations related to the paper industry, along with the country’s leading economist, Mr. Dr Qaiser Bengali, spoke at a joint press conference. During the press conference, they warned that due to the paper crisis, books would not be available to students in the new school year starting in August.
Pakistan’s local newspaper reports that there is a serious paper crisis, paper prices are skyrocketing, paper is becoming expensive and increasing day by day, and publishers cannot determine the price of books.
As a result, the textbook boards of Sindh, Punjab and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa will not be able to print textbooks.
Meanwhile, a Pakistani journalist questioned the country’s “incompetent and failed rulers”, asking how they would deal with its economic problems at a time when the country is in a state of crisis. stuck in a vicious cycle of having to borrow to pay off previous loans.
Ayaz Amir, writing for local Pakistani media Dunya Daily said, “We have seen the rules of Ayub Khan (Former President of Pakistan), Yahiya Khan, Zulfikar Ali Bhutto and Muhammad Zia-ul-Haq We’ve seen governments of dictators and they all have one thing in common, borrowing to solve the problem and then borrowing more to repay the previous loan.” He said the cycle never ends. This end is still going on and now Pakistan has reached a point where no one is willing to lend it any more. “We cannot solve our country’s economic problems when the population is 11 crores under Zia ul Haq. How will our incompetent and failed rulers improve the economy? when the population has doubled to 22 crores?” he asked the question in his column, the local press reported.
Meanwhile, China has made a tough deal with Pakistan when it comes to paying back its loans and other investments in Pakistan. In fiscal year 2021-2022, Pakistan paid about $150 million in interest to China for using China’s trade finance facility worth $4.5 billion. In the 2019-2020 financial year, Pakistan paid $120 million in interest on $3 billion loans.
China has been quite strict about withdrawing money from Pakistan. Take for example Pakistan’s energy sector, where Chinese investors are constantly demanding to resolve issues related to existing project sponsors in order to attract new investment.
Several Chinese projects in Pakistan are facing problems securing their loans in China due to the huge debt in the energy sector of Pakistan amounting to about 14 billion USD. .
While China is heavily responsible for Pakistan’s debt problem, successive governments mishandling the Pakistani economy has led to the current stalemate.
Major loans from China, Saudi Arabia and Qatar as well as 13 loans from the International Monetary Fund (IMF) over 30 years (with most of the loan programs suspended mid-way due to non-responsibility) lending conditions), is the main cause of the economic downturn.
The IMF’s $6 billion loan in 2019 is also on hold, and China has responded to Pakistan’s frequent requests for help. Ironically, for its part, Pakistan is not afraid to play a loan shark. This strategy did not work and only plunged Pakistan deeper into debt. Pakistan must keep a close eye on developments in Sri Lanka, as it could be the next to face the consequences of bad economic policies and a heavy debt load.
(Except for the title, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from an aggregated feed.)