Context: Addressing a ceremony titled “Plastic Free Pakistan” at the Ministry of in Islamabad on August 1, 2019, Minister of State for Climate Change, Ms. Zartaj Gul Wazir, claimed that Climate Change initiatives are unaffordable for the Government as previous governments have left the PTI Government with a debt of PKR 31,000 Billion.
Claim: Previous Governments have left us [the PTI Government] 31,000 Billion PKR of debt.
Claimant: Ms. Zartaj Gul Wazir, MNA, Minister of State for Climate Change
Source of Claim: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QezaBTFOxtY (Around 0:15)
http://www.sbp.org.pk/ecodata/Summary.pdf Pakistan’s Debt and Liabilities Summary from the State Bank of Pakistan.
According to the State Bank of Pakistan, Pakistan’s total debt and liabilities in June 2018 stood at PKR 29,879.2 Billion and at PKR 30,846.2 Billion in September 2018. While Ms. Zartaj Gul Wazir is not exact in her claim of PKR 31,000 billion, her number is very close to the accurate figure of accumulated debt. However, it is essential to clarify that while her claim about PTI’s inherited debt is true, there is no causality between underfunding climate change initiative and total government debt.