ISLAMABAD - External debts of Pakistan have soared by 75 percent during the last 9 years, and now stand at $65.5 billion, the highest ever in the country’s history.

According to the State Bank of Pakistan’s (SBP) data, Pakistan’s external debts increased by 75 percent from 2006 to 2015, while during the last two- and-a-half years alone, foreign loans, amounting to $27 billion, were borrowed. The report says if Pakistan continues to obtain foreign loans at this pace, then the figures are likely to swell to $90 billion in 2020.

The country’s foreign exchange reserves now stand at $20.83 billion. Owing to decline in country’s exports by 200 percent, the trade deficit has widened to alarming proportions. Pakistan has floated Rs $2.5 billion euro bonds at highly costly rates during the last two years in order to jack up its foreign exchange reserves.

According to economic experts, Pakistan will have to obtain more funds from IMF and other financial institutions to return its loans. The process of paying back the foreign loans, secured from IMF and World Bank, will commence from 2017, and more loans will have to be obtained to pay back these loans.

Talks are underway for starting a new programme with the IMF in 2016, as Finance Minister Ishaq Dar has given indications for acquiring more foreign loans. According to him more loans will be secured to meet the fiscal deficit.