ISLAMABAD -  Dr Miftah Ismail has been appointed adviser to prime minister on finance, revenue and economic affairs, says a notification issued here Tuesday night.

According to the notification, Dr. Miftah, who was earlier working as special assistant to prime minister on economic affairs, would act as a federal minister.

Earlier in the day, Rana Afzal Khan took oath of state minister for finance. President Mamnoon Hussain administrated the oath.

The government is setting up its economic team after granting three months leaves to Ishaq Dar in order to bring out country from the current economic crises.

After the oath taking, Rana Afzal Khan vowed to play a positive role in finding solutions for the economic challenges including widening trade and fiscal deficits of the country.

Afzal Khan will hold the portfolio of Finance and Economic Affairs as allocated by the prime minister.

Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi had been holding the finance portfolio.

The government has taken one month to appoint minister of state after the post fell vacant after prime minister withdrew the portfolio of finance and economic affairs from Ishaq Dar on November 22 after granting him leave.

The minister of state said that this was the last year for the current tenure of the PML-N government but he was sure that many ongoing projects would be completed in this year that would take the GDP to the next, higher level.

He further stated that he would play a positive role to find solutions to the economic challenges such as of trade and fiscal deficit.

The government is struggling to maintain twin deficits, budge and current account deficits, within the level approved by the parliament in June last year.

The government is likely to miss the budget deficit target of 4.1 per cent of GDP by a wide margin.

Pakistan and the IMF had revised the budget deficit target upward up to five per cent of the GDP against earlier envisaged target of 4.1 per cent for the current fiscal year 2017-2018.

Similarly, the government would miss the current account deficit target of $9 billion.

The CAD is likely to touch $18 billion by the end of current fiscal year.

After assuming charge, the minister of state asserted that he would work as diligently as possible to serve the country under the leadership of Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi to bring the country out of economic crisis.

He thanked Prime Minister Abbasi and the leader of the PML-N Muhammad Nawaz Sharif for reposing their trust in his abilities and giving him such an important portfolio.

The minister of state also thanked Senator Ishaq Dar for recommending him for the post.

He also said that he had been serving as a politician for the last 25 years and for the past four years he had been assisting the finance minister in budget preparation exercise, so he was reasonably familiar with the economic challenges the country had been facing.

President Mamnoon Hussain administered the oath of office to him at a ceremony held in Islamabad.

The president congratulated the new minister of state for finance and hoped he would discharge his professional responsibilities efficiently.

Afzal Khan was elected as a Member of the National Assembly from NA-82 Faisalabad VIII.

He has served as parliamentary secretary for finance during the past four and a half years.