CBP governor-FBR chairman changed
04 May, 2019
The federal government on Friday fired the governor of the central bank and the chairman of the tax collection body, two senior government officials said.
“The government has decided to remove the governor of the State Bank of Pakistan and chairman of the FBR,” a finance ministry source said, referring to State Bank of Pakistan Chairman Tariq Bajwa and Federal Bureau of Revenue Chairman Jahanzeb Khan. A source at the prime minister’s office also confirmed that both have been sacked.
The removal of the two senior officials comes only weeks after Finance Minister Asad Umar was asked to step down amid vital bailout negotiations with the International Monetary Fund (IMF), suggesting the government wants to overhaul its financial team amid weakening growth rates and soaring inflation.
A private TV channel reported that SBP Governor Tariq Bajwa has submitted his resignation to the Prime Minister Office. According to the reports, Bajwa tendered the resignation after Prime Minister Imran Khan sought his removal from the top post at the central bank.
Bajwa, appointed as SBP governor in 2017 during the tenure of the previous government, was one of the key figures in Pakistan’s ongoing bailout negotiations with the IMF. He was also seen to be close to Ishaq Dar, the former finance minister who appointed him and who championed a ‘strong rupee’ policy that many analysts blame for Pakistan’s current economic woes, including ballooning budget and current account deficits. The IMF is pushing Pakistan to embrace a more flexible rupee policy to end repeated boom-and-bust cycles, with many analysts arguing that the local currency is overvalued.