Ishaq Dar becomes Pakistan's new Finance Minister

Pakistan appointed Ishaq Dar as its new Finance Minister as the nation struggles to recover from an economic crisis worsened by deadly floods

September 28, 2022 01:55 pm | Updated 04:18 pm IST - Islamabad:

Pakistan’s President Arif Alvi, centre, administrates oath to newly appointed Finance Minister Ishaq Dar, left, as Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif, right, watches during a ceremony in Islamabad, Pakistan on September 28, 2022.

Pakistan’s President Arif Alvi, centre, administrates oath to newly appointed Finance Minister Ishaq Dar, left, as Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif, right, watches during a ceremony in Islamabad, Pakistan on September 28, 2022. | Photo Credit: AP

Ishaq Dar took oath as Pakistan's new Finance Minister on Wednesday for the fourth time as the country struggled to resurrect its cash-strapped economy, also hit by unprecedented floods.

The 72-year-old senior leader of the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) who had been in self-exile since 2017 after being accused in a corruption case, took oath as the Finance Minister a day after he was sworn in as a Senator amid loud protests by former premier Imran Khan's party members who shouted slogans, calling him a "thief" and an "absconder."

President Arif Alvi administered the oath to Mr. Dar during a ceremony here which was also attended by Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif.

The move came after former finance minister Miftah Ismail stepped down from his post to make way for the PML-N senator.

Mr. Dar was nominated by PML-N supremo Nawaz Sharif and Prime Minister Shehbaz as the Finance Minister during a meeting held in London on Sunday and returned to take charge of the finance portfolio, which he has previously held on three occasions.

Corruption case pending

He had been living in London for nearly five years to evade prosecution in a corruption case, which is still pending against him.

Mr. Dar was elected to the Senate from Punjab but could not take oath as he was not in the country.

The new finance minister's appointment comes after months of economic uncertainty marked by devaluation in rupee and crippling inflation, which will also be a big challenge for Mr. Dar.

Recovery after floods that affected more than 33 million people and caused losses of over $40 billion would be another tough challenge for him.

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