The World Bank has revised down its outlook for Pakistan’s economic growth in the current year from 2% to 0.4%. The bank cited limited financial space and tighter financial conditions as reasons for the weaker forecast. However, the World Bank’s projection assumes an unspecified agreement with the International Monetary Fund for bailout funding. Emerging from months of economic turmoil that has been exacerbated by a balance of payments crisis and high food prices, Pakistan has sought $1.1bn of the $6.5bn bailout agreed in 2019 yet has yet to secure the funding. The state of the country’s economy was highlighted by the situation at flour distribution centres, which witnessed stampedes and looting. Separately, the World Bank reduced its regional growth forecast for 2023 to 5.6% from October’s prediction of 6.1%. It also downgraded India’s predicted growth in the current fiscal year from 6.6% to 6.3%.
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