Video: Can Imran Khan put Pakistan on a new path?

Tue 11 Sep 2018 11:25 AM GST
Known earlier for his socialite lifestyle, and winning the 1992 cricket World Cup, Imran Khan's rise to the top job as prime minister comes 22 years after he began waging a populist campaign against those whom he once famously referred to as "criminals that are running the country".

That sentiment resulted in the swell in public opinion against what commentators within the country routinely say is its biggest challenge, even beyond extremism: corruption.

Khan has promised to push hard against ill-gotten domestic wealth that he says the elite have long siphoned off. This pursuit of ill-gotten wealth is part of a larger, as yet unformalised plan to address the country’s precarious financial situation.

For a country with the world’s 14th largest GDP by purchasing power parity, Pakistan has an astoundingly narrow revenue base: less than one percent of its more than 207 million people pay income tax.

In less than a year, Pakistan has devalued its rupee four times – imports outnumbering exports fourfold in value have led to foreign reserves dwindling to a mere $9bn.

Recent reports quoting the country’s incoming leadership say it will reach out to the IMF for an emergency cash infusion of $12bn to cover its current account deficit in the short term before it can institute reforms.

In this edition of Inside AB, Eddie Taylor and Shayan Shakeel look at the task ahead for Khan and analyse his chances of making good on those promises.

(Source: Arabianbusiness.com YouTube channel)