Despite Finance Minister Asad Umar announcing that Pakistan was not in a balance of payments crisis anymore, the government still seems determined to cover its tracks and gather as much financial assistance as it can to lower dependence on the International Monetary Fund (IMF). After a generous bailout package from Saudi Arabia, Pakistan is set to receive financial assistance from the United Arab Emirates (UAE) next.

According to the official news agency of the Emirates, UAE means to deposit US $3 billion in the State Bank of Pakistan to “support the financial and monetary policy of the country”. The Abu Dhabi Fund for Development said, in a statement today, that it will deposit the said amount in the coming days to enhance liquidity and monetary reserves of foreign currency at the bank. The Abu Dhabi Fund for Development has previously financed eight development projects in Pakistan with a total value of AED1.5 billion.

This development is not new or unexpected. The Pakistani government had been hinting towards a package from UAE for some time. The government included “resetting relations with key partners including Saudi Arabia and the UAE” among its achievements under its 100 days milestones. The Prime Minister, in his first four months, has visited the UAE twice-both times, the two countries agreed to strengthen economic trade and investment.

The package, like the previous international financial packages the country secured, is obviously a good stepping stone for the economy. It allows an economy, suffocated by the imbalance of payments, to breathe. It enables Pakistan to negotiate a better deal with the IMF, one that won’t impose limits on the country’s independent decisions. In short, like all financial assistance, this UAE deal provides good temporary relief for the economy. The foreign relations aspect is also beneficial. The bailout package allows for better relations between the UAE and the new government, proving that the good relations between Dubai and Pakistan went beyond governments.

Yet, like the previous bailout package, it will be useful to remember that this financial assistance is a loan which increases which Pakistan will have to pay back, adding a further burden on the country’s debt. Due to increasing loans from China for CPEC projects, Pakistan’s debt is rising at an alarming rate, an issue which could be a huge problem in the coming years. This makes it even more essential for the government to now produce tangible results with the loans it has taken- so that they can be paid back in time.