'Pak economy can't absorb 'shocks' of drastic review of ties with US'

Pakistan may face international isolation on the economic front if it undertakes a drastic review of its ties with the United States, the country's finance minister Abdul Hafeez Sheikh has warned.

"There are some shocks Pakistan can absorb but there are others it can't. A single incident must not determine our relations with the US," the Express Tribune quoted Shiekh, as saying.

"Any decision should be taken while keeping in mind the multidimensional paradigm of security, prosperity of the country and economic diplomacy," he added.

He warned that the US might influence the financial institutions to hit Pakistan's economic interests.

A committee member, requesting anonymity, quoted Sheikh as saying that Pakistan's weak economy would be at risk if its ties with the US deteriorated further.

"It is not about American aid but its clout over the IMF, World Bank and other financial institutions that can pose a real challenge for us," the committee member said, quoting Sheikh's statement.

Sheikh also called on the Pakistan Government to adopt a 'balanced' approach towards its relations with the US.

His statement came in the wake of the parliamentary committee meeting, which finalized its recommendations for the review of Pak-US ties.

The Pakistan Government had vowed to review its ties with the US as its response to the November 26 airstrike that had killed 24 Pakistani soldiers in Mohmand Agency

Some committee members, however, questioned Sheikh's statement, pointing out that Pakistan had survived 'crippling sanctions' imposed by US in 1998 for testing nuclear devices as a response to tests carried out by India.

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